Crossing Tampa Bay’s bridges can be beautifully frustrating. While the water reflects the sun all around us, producing vibrant sunsets, it also makes traffic jams a little more uncomfortable due to the piercing, amplified rays. Even with the windows down and the AC blowing the stillness tests one’s patience. One summer evening back in 2014, crawling through bumper-to-bumper traffic under the scorching sun, I came across an elderly woman footing it across the Bayside Bridge with a bag under her arm that looked to be equal to her own weight.
If it weren’t for the traffic, I might not have stopped to give the woman a ride. There is something about the uncontrollable environment of a traffic jam that reminds you how irrelevant your schedule can be. Sometimes it actually makes it easier to let got of your time.
As soon as she sat in the car I could smell the distance she had traveled, but I had to ask her anyway. By my calculation she had already walked five miles from her office, which, coincidentally, was next to mine. Five miles in bumper-to-bumper traffic, I thought to myself, and not a soul stopped and offered a ride. Bless her heart; I don’t think she was expecting one.
In our daily lives, we often are in such a hurry to get somewhere and are worried about how we will get there, we scarcely think about what we are capable of doing en route, or how we can use the time between destinations.
More simply put, we are so focused on where we think God wants us to be (or where we want God to place us), we marginalize the moments we are already in. God has us exactly where we are for reasons. We just need to turn on our spiritual radars and look around.
How often do we say to ourselves, “well I could help, but …” and keep moving on? Instead, we ought to take some time in our days to ask, “Who needs Him and how can I be His conduit, right now?”
I don’t always get it right. Despite my heroic testimony, I still ignore it when I see people broken down on the side of the road. I see them in my peripherals as I speed through the fast lane; the slow lane buffers our distance, almost as an excuse to avoid them. I wonder if they need help, then I pray for God to put it in someone’s heart to stop and offer that help …
This week, as you find ways to give your time to others, start by slowing down and making more time for God to work through you. Instead of taking the fast lane in your daily schedule, take the slow one so you can be more readily available for Him. Look out for someone who could use some roadside assistance and be ready to jumpstart a heart.
Posted on Fri, March 27, 2015
by Karl Golombisky