Friday, February 29, 2008

Wet Windshields And Blind Spots

The windshield wipers on my truck don’t work. They did work when I first got them, I know because I turned the on when checking out the vehicle. (like I wasn’t going to buy it if they didn’t function…but when you are mechanically challenged it is one of the things that you do, like looking at the motor and nodding your head, to make it seem like you are making a wise choice). Anyway, they did glide across the window in a ssslllooowwww way, but glide they did.

It didn’t matter. You see, in Cochabamba Bolivia, it doesn’t rain for nine months out of the year. Starting in mid-February until the end of November, there is one weather forecast: “Today it will be sunny with more sun afternoon with a partly cloudy sunny evening. The five day forecast is as follows: Monday, Sunny. Tuesday, Sunny. Wednesday, Sunny, etc.” So, when I discovered that my windshield wipers did not work, it really did not matter. I didn’t need them. I moved here in the dry season, bought my truck in the dry season, and apparently my wipers quit working in the dry season. No big deal. It is like having a leaky roof. When it isn’t raining…it isn’t leaking, so what is the big deal?

But, look at the dates above for the dry season. You will notice that we are now in the wet season. I mentioned that there is one forecast for nine months…there is also one forecast for the other three months. Replace the word ‘sunny’ with ‘rain and thunderstorms’ and you have the new forecast. It is so easy to be a weatherman here! It rains a lot every day. Now, I have a problem. I haven’t been able to put my truck in the shop—I need it to drive since it is too rainy to walk. But my windshield wipers don’t work. Sometimes I have to drive with my head leaning out of the driver’s window like a dog with his jaws flapping in the wind, having the rain slap my face like an acupuncturist’s needles (I would assume, I don’t do acupuncture, but it has to hurt like this ). It isn’t fun, and is a bit dangerous. I have improvised. I have a window washing squeegee and I use it to wipe off the window as I drive. I can only reach a small area, but I can have a good 6” square clearance.

I was thinking about this, and how silly it was yesterday as the rain pelted my hand on the squeegee. I knew that the wipers didn’t work, but I didn’t ‘feel’ the need to repair them. I was going to. I was going to do it before rainy season. I really was. But, I didn’t because it was sunny…and it was going to be sunny tomorrow…and it was going to be…then it rained.

You know what I realized? This is a lot like we live our spiritual lives. In our hearts, and in our minds, we know that a storm is coming. We know, we are absolutely confident, that because we live in a fallen world: we are going to have to face pain, sorrow, and hurt. In life, we are going to experience storms. But do we prepare for them? Right now, when things aren’t going bad, do we strengthen our spiritual man? Do we invest time in prayer, in the disciplines, in the basic things of life that build up our spiritual muscles so that when we have to shoulder the hard times we can carry them? Or do we ‘plan’ on doing this or that one day? I once read that the Christian life is like watching a professional ball player. We love what the player can do on the field. We love the way that he can throw, catch, kick, hit, shoot, or whatever it is we admire him for. Every boy under 16 wants to be like that player on the field. But the fact is, what he does on the field and in the game is the result of what he has been doing for years off of the field and before the game. We want to be like the player in the game, but we don’t seek to mimic his hard work in practice. We want to be like Jesus as we read of His power and His ability in the ‘game’ as He faced adversary and problems. But do we seek to be like Jesus early in the morning before the sun was risen?

We want our windshield wipers to work in the rain, but we didn’t repair them in the sun. Every day, when I get in my car, I am reminded again of the importance of preparing for adversity. I get a blurry glimpse through the windshield of the things that I could have done a month ago. It is a constant mnemonic aide of what I really need to do today. I need to spend time with Jesus. I need to walk in the Holy Spirit. I need to abide in the Vine and Live in God. I must do this today, because tomorrow the winds may be so strong that weak branches will break. I hope and pray that my life is more than a weak branch!

Living In The SON, Driving in the rain,



kibbe said...

WoW! This spoke to my heart!