Prayer: The Road Rage Vaccine

I’m in Arizona visiting my sons and some sweet friends. Between driving more than 1000 miles to get here and all the socializing I’ve been doing, my little white Buick has gotten quite the workout.

As I toodled over to hang out with my youngest son today, I learned yet another way to pray without ceasing.

Lunchtime traffic was brisk. People were probably in a hurry to get to the Slurpee store to beat the 120-degree heat.

To my right, I heard a roaring engine and saw flash of red. At first, I thought it was a fire truck rushing by, but, no, it was a red pick-up truck pulling a matching flatbed trailer.

In less than 20 seconds, the truck swerved from lane-to-lane three times with black exhaust pouring from the tailpipe. Other drivers slammed on brakes and veered into other lanes to get out of the truck’s path.

Danger signs flashed in my mind, and I stayed as far away as I could from the speeding truck-trailer. I honestly thought I was about to witness a fatal accident. It was that bad. Horns blared in every lane. I could sense the tension in the air.

The driver whipped into the right-turn lane and screeched to a halt at the red light, while I continued straight. I imagined a collective sigh of relief on Baseline Road.

As I inched past the truck, I glanced over to see what kind of nut job was driving like that and saw a handsome teenaged boy with a couple of friends. And that’s when the prayers started pouring out.

Lord, please slow those boys down. Protect them and everyone else on the road from their poor choices. Help them to use the brains You blessed them with.

The young driver’s eyes met mine, and I managed to mouth, “Be safe!” before I passed on by. I felt like a total mom, but, hey, it was better than letting my middle finger do the talking, right?

As I pulled in to meet up with my boy, my mind was still on the scene from before.

Seems like a week doesn’t go by that the news doesn’t talk about instances of road rage where people snap over issues on the road. What if the Christians on the road got busy praying instead of honking horns, giving dirty looks and shaking fists?

Inviting Jesus into stressful driving situations invites peace into the chaos. The crazy drivers and road ragers won’t know what hit them. That is, unless we’re the ones being crazy. Whether it’s our own driving that needs improvement or the driving of others, I believe prayer is the road rage vaccine.

Lord,

Ride with me today. When I feel threatened on the road, may my first response be prayer and not anger. Help me see other drivers through Your eyes. In Jesus’ Name I pray, AMEN

Do you think more prayer could improve your driving experience? I challenge you to try it today. Let me know how it goes!

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#FitnessFriday My Own Kick-Butt Pace

Week Three of Camp Gladiator is in the books. It was HIIT (high-intensity interval training) week. I feel so athletic even typing HIIT. I won’t mention that I looked it up to see if I was supposed to put periods between the letters or not. I’m still more wordsmith than athlete.

HIIT routines involve short bursts of high-intensity exercise with short rest periods in between. My trainer, Matt, said on more than one occasion, “Everyone needs to work at their own kick-butt pace.”

I don’t think I’ve ever had a kick-butt pace before. Take one look at my butt, and you’ll know it’s true. But this week, I pushed myself as hard as I could, and, you know what? I’m starting to tell a difference.

My push-ups look much more like push-ups. My sense of balance is becoming less and less embarrassing. My lungs no longer burn a hole in my chest after 10 seconds.

But I noticed something that I really hope changes. When I exercise, I have a one-track mind. It takes so much concentration for me to do the movements correctly and to will myself to keep moving that I don’t notice anything going on around me. If there’s counting involved, I pretty much go temporarily blind and deaf.

This realization hit me on Wednesday when a classmate gave me a sweaty high-five and said, “Good job!” I grinned and high-fived her right back, but I had no earthly idea if she did a good job or not. She could have been in the corner eating a king-size Snicker bar as far as I know.

I sincerely hope my kick-butt pace won’t always require 100% of my brainpower. I don’t want to be a self-centered squatter! I want to be able to cheer on my workout pals and even help out newbies (once I graduate from newbie status).

Hard stuff takes a lot out of us, doesn’t it? Whether it’s going through hard times or learning how to do hard things, difficulties have a way of distracting us from other things and people.

It’s easy to make harsh assumptions when people aren’t as attentive as we think they should be. Maybe we should give each other the benefit of the doubt. When we’re not all there, it could be that it’s taking every ounce of us to keep breathing.

Lord, thank you letting me see some progress this week. I feel better. I feel stronger. I feel braver. I’m learning about my own kick-butt pace. Help me to get to the point where I can kick butt and notice the people around me at the same time. Help me to extend grace to everyone because I don’t know what hard thing they might be going through. In Jesus’ name, AMEN

Next week, I’m headed to Arizona to see my sweet sons. I’ll miss out on Camp Gladiator for a couple weeks, but I’m taking my workout clothes with me. If the Lord brings me to your mind, please pray for me to workout and eat right while I’m gone. I don’t want this trip to derail my progress. Thank you!

 

 

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