Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A Lesson in Trust


The autumn day was gorgeous. Leaves were just beginning to turn to their fall shades of red and gold and orange. A nip was in the air, and I was thrilled to be able to wear my favorite cardigan. Our family van was wending its’ way from our suburb, through the countryside, to the south side of our large metropolitan area as we eagerly anticipated a day of shopping, dining, and togetherness.


We decided to take the road less traveled, and we soon found ourselves in unfamiliar territory. I looked both ways before turning. I listened carefully to the directions of the GPS. I checked the blind spot before I changed lanes. I came to a full stop at every stop sign and let the other driver proceed first. My high school driver ed teacher would have been proud.

But I wasn’t driving.

That’s right. I sat in the passenger seat.

“Steve, I think you’re supposed to turn here.”
“Steve, I think that other guy was here first.”
“Steve, there’s a stop sign coming.”

And my neck was beginning to hurt from all the checking and re-checking and checking again.

Then, right there with a corn field on the right and a soybean field on the left and the sun in my eyes, I couldn’t enjoy my favorite cardigan or the fall color anymore. I knew I had become what I had determined I never would be.

I was a side-seat driver. You know, let’s just call it what it is. I was being a controller, at least in the car.

I forced myself to release my grip on the armrest. That provided some immediate relief.

I also forced myself not to look, not to check, not to spout off instructions. I forced myself to let the man drive.

Soon I felt myself beginning to relax and enjoying the scenery and the chatter of the children again.
And that was that. I’m all better, and I don’t control anymore.

You do believe that, right?

Me neither.

When we’re merging onto the interstate, I’m still sure that we’ll hit another vehicle and all die in a fiery crash if I don’t check the other lanes for my husband. When we come to a four-way stop, I just know that we’ll be hit in the side by that SUV if I don’t look both ways and all the children will be crippled for life. And don't get me started on pulling out of a parking spot.

That’s stupid. My husband is an excellent driver, and I have no reason not to trust his driving ability.

Now, dare I say it?

My God is an excellent driver, and I have no reason not to trust his driving ability.

Ouch.

So, I’m still forcing myself to relax. To gaze at the scenery or read a book. To gaze into the eyes of the precious blessings He has given me and enjoy this moment. To read His Book, not just at devotional time but anytime I feel like side-seat driving.

I’m forcing myself not to look.

It is a conscious effort, but worth it for both the marriage and the faith.

One more lesson in trust. One more lesson in learning to let go.








How about you? Do you double-check when your spouse is driving? What lessons in trust have you learned?




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27 comments:

  1. I bring a book with me and just read so I don't have to check. I entrust myself to God's care and literally think "if we crash and die I will be better off, so relax and enjoy the book."

    I know, horrible, huh? But us controllers have to resort to something crazy not to control!! hahaha

    PS: DH is a really good driver. Much better than me.

    PS2: I never sleep. After all I am still a controller. hahahha!

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    1. I don't think, generally, that I'm a controller. It drives me crazy in other people, so I try really hard not to be one myself. I'm more of a worrier which, when in a potentially dangerous situation, turns into controlling. And I, too, have trouble sleeping in the van! Thanks for sharing, Tereza.

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  2. My husband and I are both a bit of control freaks! It makes for an interesting time. lol We are still learning... :)

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    1. I'd like to be a little fly on the window and see how that goes! :)

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    2. LOL! We have learned that communication is important. And that learning to LISTEN is a very important part of communication.

      Thanks for linking up with Thrive @ Home!

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  3. Meghan, this is such a perfect real life illustration of a very spiritual battle for women to submit to the truth of God's promises (that he will provide, protect, bring peace, etc.) and also to submit to their husband's leadership in life beyond the car! Great piece, with many lessons to absorb from it!

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    1. I thought I was just trying to relax, Tyanne, and then it turned into so much more. I'll be thinking on this epiphany for a while, and I'm glad it's an encouragement to you.

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  4. Grateful that God takes us as we are, works in progress! :)

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  5. Oh man! I SO needed to hear this! Pretty sure I am currently doing this with God through the difficulties I am facing. I know that He sees how this all turns out, but I have such a hard time walking in that trust. Thank you (And beautiful writing!!) Stopping by from In Bloom. So glad I did.
    Amanda @ www.the-cadence.com

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    1. It can definitely be a moment-to-moment trust. Fix your eyes on Jesus, Amanda, and prayers for peace for you.

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  6. Meghan,

    You had me at the side-seat driver, then you blind sided me with the connection to allowing God to "drive" our lives. There, see, I knew I shoulda been looking both ways! Visiting from Be Not Weary, and glad I did :)

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  7. My problem was more about being a control freak when my girls were learning to drive. Nothing like teaching someone to drive to really bring out the worst in you!

    I do want the Lord to be in control of "driving my life."

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    1. My oldest will be driving in less than three years. Eeek! I hadn't even thought of that. I must get a hold on this before then! Thank you, Jerralea, for commenting.

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  8. I also tend to try to be a passenger seat driver. I also think that sometimes I undermine the trust in our relationship by not just letting him drive. Because of the deeper message that is sent- I don't really trust you to keep us safe, and I don't trust God to keep us safe, because I think I have to be watching and paying attention to make sure nothing happens to us.
    This is going to give me a lot to think and pray about the next time we get in the car. Thank you Meghan, and God bless you.

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    1. We've been married for over twenty years, so I don't know why this was such a revelation to me. But you said it exactly right -- not trusting my husband to keep us safe and thinking that he can't do it without me. I'm glad this was an encouragement to you, and many blessings to you!

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  9. Sometimes it is so hard to just let Him do what has to be done, while others it is super easy. I am, once again, in a letting Him run things phase~ realizing His path will be better even if the start of walking that path can be painful. This narrowing of the path (making it more specific what I may Not do), is where my challenge lies~ even though I requested it of Him~ LOL silly me! Fussing about what I ask for!!!

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    1. Praying for many blessings for you as you work through this challenge. Thanks for commenting.

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  10. Oh my! Yes I do this! LOL! It is something I work on each time we ride together. Enjoying the radio, the scenery, etc. Anything to keep my mind on how I would be driving differently! God is a much better driver, this I have learned after many bad choices and dead ends. Thank you for sharing! We're neighbors today at Tuesday Tips ;) Blessings! simplyhelpinghim.com

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    1. Thanks for being honest, Misty. And thanks for stopping by, neighbor!

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  11. Trust is very hard to do in many situations. Something I could be better at with father God as well. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. I hope this was encouraging to you. Many blessings to you.

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  12. Great analogy! My husband's driving makes me nervous, so I do this, as well. Good reminder to relax and enjoy the scenery, not just in the car, but trusting God to drive correctly, too. I enjoyed reading this. (Visiting from OYHT linkup.)

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    1. Thanks so much, Laura. Glad you hopped over.

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  13. Wonderful illustration! I think you and I must have a lot in common. :) Thanks for linking up!

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    1. Thanks for providing the link-up opportunity, Rosilind.

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