A simple request often expressed by one or all of our children.
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I –
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
~ Robert Frost, The Road Not Taken
When we travel further distances to visit family or go beyond our typical outings around town, the children delight in hills, valleys, twists and turns. However, on the day to day comings and goings, we journey on mostly flat, straight roads.
And we know that all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Romans 8:28 NIV
It is when my husband or I answer yes to their pleas for the bumpy road that our affirmative reply is then met with grand enthusiasm . A chorus of "Yeah!" "Oh, goody!" "I can't wait!" and "It is going to be so much fun!" resounds.
…we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.
Romans 5:3-5 NIV
A few weeks ago, on Sunday, while the Drummer, my husband, remained at church to play music for the second service, I drove home with our children.
"Mommy, can we take the bumpy road home?" my four year old asked wth a giggle. "Sure," I replied, and we took the bumpy road.
I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.
Romans 8:18 NIV
They laughed and shouted encouragement to one another. Bumping and jostling around in the car, I realized the joy they took in these moments.
Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
I Thessalonians 5:11 NIV
These moments, the bumps, the jostling, I dreaded. I lacked their enthusiasm. Give me the flat, straight passage home, my heart cries. Why would I want to be jostled and ripped out of my seat? Why do I lack enthusiasm and joy for this, something I thoroughly enjoyed as a youth? On that morning, a safe, uneventful passage home was all I wanted.
Therefore do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us
an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
II Corinthians 4:16-18 NIV
Yet I wonder if I approach my life in a similar manner...do I dread the trials, bumps, tribulations, jaunts of life in the same way? Am I just existing, making it through the days...attempting to have a smooth, straight ride home to heaven?
Consider it pure joy, my brothers,
whenever you face trials of many kinds,…
James 1:2 NIV
or could my heart cry out to my Heavenly Father honestly:
"Abba, can we take the bumpy road home?"
To be truthful...No, I am not there, nor anywhere near there...
Excitedly anticipating the trials and tribulations of life is beyond my comprehension. I have lived the depths of despair and seen the evil of man (in myself and others) firsthand.
But what I can do is trust the one who is in the driver seat of my life. I know He has plans for me that are for my good and my growth no matter how bumpy the road ahead seems.
"...he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
Philippians 1:6b NIV