Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Moment of Grace

Road rage!! I read about it all the time. Incredible crimes have been committed by people suffering from "Road Rage." And, though no violent crimes have been committed by me to date, I suffer from the dreadful malady.

I remember the time I was angered by my nephew, Chuck. I can't remember the incident that occurred in the church parking lot, but there I stood in the rain, with my hands on the hood of his truck, to prevent him from leaving while I read the "riot act." Now get this picture: He is in a truck, safe and dry. I am standing in the rain, cold and wet, trying to keep a 4 ton truck from moving, using my bare hands. We all eventually dissolved in laughter over the incident.

There have been other occasions that are too numerous to mention. There was the time I was hit in the rear by a guy in a traffic circle. I jumped out of the car and was furiously flinging epithets that would make a sailor blush. My anger was quickly abated, however, when the driver, a 7 foot tall, three hundred pound black dude emerged from the driver's seat. I am not sure what I said, but it was probably something like, "Gee, I'm sorry I pulled out in front of you so suddenly..." Road rage can sometimes be hazardous to your health.

I can't count the times that I have given an offending driver the universal hand salute of disdain. Not to mention the things that I have shouted to motorists, while my young brood of children sat fearful and puzzled in back seats. Having provided such a great fatherly example over the years, I realized that I had to change. I was no longer going to be dominated by road rage.

I was listening to a radio preacher expounding on this topic. What kind of witness are we giving when we have "I love Jesus" stickers on our bumpers and we are shouting and giving others solitary finger salutes. And so, I resolved to change. He suggested we give the peace sign instead. To say words of blessing to the offending party. Yes, Yes. It made so much sense. I resolved to try it out and the opportunity for redemption and grace sharing quickly presented itself

Last Thursday, as I was leaving my neighborhood on my motorcycle, I accidentally pulled in front of a young lady in a Honda Accord. At the next "Stop" sign, she pulled up next to me and shouted, "Hey, Old Man, why don't you learn how to drive that thing?!" Oh joy!! Here was my opportunity. My grace filled moment. My chance to redeem all of the years of rage and fury. The radio preacher's counsel was running through my brain. So I looked at that sweet young face, staring at me through the open car window and prayerfully said...."AWW, go to Hell!!" and roared off. Oh Lord, be merciful to me a sinner!


Laura said...

You are a brave one.
I would love to "confess" my driving habits on my blog, but too many "families" might see it.
A few years ago- I gave that same salute (pretending to scratch my eye of course).
Let's just say it is by the dear grace of God that I didn't die that day. The other driver tried to run me off the road for about 2 miles.
I am much calmer now. (Tho I may mutter a expletive now and then.)I will NEVER again "salute" anyone.
No way.
Not worth it.

Terrie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Terrie said...

Gordon I am the one that deleted the comment because I had put my full name on it. But I just want to say don't feel bad because I once said "God Bless You" with great venom and realized immediately that it was alot worse than cussing someone out.