Saturday, October 20, 2012

Life on a Rutted Dirt Road
(Part 1)

For several weeks, the Holy Spirit has been working in my heart to write a post about living on a rutted dirt road.  It has come and gone and no real ‘firming’ has happened.
Then, I met my friends in Michigan for an extended weekend retreat in the north woods of the upper mitten.  We made the drive from Detroit to Grayling in high anticipation.  The trip was exciting because we knew from experience what a great joy awaited us.

Our rutted dirt road in Michigan
Photo by Pat Trent
This was after an overnight 'drying time'.

As we drove, the final turn was made onto the road that led to the lodge.  I swear, it looked more like a logging road than a road meant for public transportation!  As we turned, the road stretched out before us.  A gravel road sunken into the wet, muddy road bed with definite ruts already created by other traffic and deepened by those cars ahead of us in our little caravan.

As the ladies drove, the ruts were at times so deep the thoughts of getting stuck in the mud was definitely in the forefront of our thoughts.  Moving to the right or left of the ruts left us with very slick surfaces to traverse.
I well remember rutted dirt roads from my childhood.  The rains of spring always left the road muddy and ruts were a fact of life.  Drying during the hot days of summer meant trips up and down the road by the county highway department with their graders. 

The ruts would be filled and the road bed smoothed as well as could be done.  The rains of fall again left us with ruts and the freezes of winter only served to make the ruts worse.  We were always thankful when hard freezes came.  Although they left the road slippery, at least it wasn’t muddy and rutted so deeply traveling was hazardous.
Living on that road meant a year long struggle with the elements and the condition of the road.  It was either wet, slippery and rutted, frozen and slick with ice or so dusty breathing was difficult when traveling with our windows open or in the back of the pick-up truck.

The path seemed never to be really smooth and free of some sort of obstacle to overcome.  Muddy with ruts, frozen and slippery or dry and dusty was the constant conditions we faced.

Life on that road was none-the-less very peaceful and I never remember being afraid of walking on that road or of riding my bike for miles up and down that road.  Safety or the lack thereof, was never an issue.  We knew the people on our road; they were our neighbors and would never allow us to be in danger.  The road was rugged, but the people were our safety net.
In my next post, I will continue this idea in a very different manner and with some comparisons that might challenge your way of thinking about God and who He is.
Y’all come back now, ya hear?!
My brothers and sisters,
you will face all kinds of trouble.
When you do, think of it as pure joy.
Your faith will be put to the test.
You know that when that happens
it will produce in you
the strength to continue.
The strength to keep going
must be allowed to finish its work.
Then you will be all you should be.
You will have everything you need.
 James 1:2-4                  


Jada's Gigi said...

Can't wait to see where this road is taking us.

Pat said...

This is going to be so good, I can just feel it! Can't wait for the next bend in the road!
Love you!!!

Mrs. Mac said...

Good .. cuz I don't want to be stuck in a rut. Can't wait to read what's just around the bend :) xx C