Saturday, June 05, 2010

5 JUN 10: Between the Hedges

(BLOGGER'S NOTE: You may find the following item humorous, serious, or a little of both - but we offer these thoughts from time to time, as we keep a seventh-day Sabbath.)

Before you get the wrong idea from our title - we will NOT talk Georgia football here today. I won't even get into this week's news about the succession line for the Bulldog mascot. After all, no one seems to care about who wears the "Harry Dawg" outfit.

But anyway: the morning runs are challenging these days, as the humidity turns up. But the other day, I faced an unexpected challenge. I jogged down the sidewalk, ready to cross a street for home - when I was stunned to find a car approaching on the street behind me. If it was on the Riverwalk, I would NOT have been surprised. Trucks with prison inmates have put me on the lawn more than once.

The trouble with this car was that the female driver was heading the wrong way down a one-way street. For pedestrians on a sidewalk, that's permissible. At least my mother told me long ago it was. And I don't really jog THAT fast, to run people over.

I caught only a glimpse of the wrong-way driver as I started to jog across the street. I wound up running right in front of her moving car. But thankfully, she was going so slowly that we didn't collide -- or else I had enough of a "kick" left to sprint 12 feet in record time.

I spoke loudly to the woman, pointing out the one-way sign to her right and saying she was going the wrong way. Instead, she simply turned left onto a two-way street and kept driving - staring straight ahead. Don't stop and say anything, and you might get away before someone calls police.

When I shared this story with my next-door neighbor, he immediately jumped to punch lines conclusions. "That woman needs to hang up her cell phone," he said first. But she wasn't holding one. "That woman needs to go back to bed," he tried next, "and get up on the right side!" At least that was one I used on "Rise N Shine" years ago....

But as I'm thinking about this.... you know, maybe this female driver was new in the neighborhood and simply followed my lead. I followed a bicyclist once through a construction zone in Amsterdam -- and my rental car wound up stuck on a hillside in a park.

My point of all this is that I escaped harm that morning. And it happened again this week, when an alleged "arson bug" tried to set fire to several buildings in my neighborhood. A suspect was arrested inside Indoor Solutions Inc. - with my car parked alongside the building. I could use a new car, but not before I took the valuables out of the old one....

Today marks one year since a major change occurred in my life [17 Jul 09]. But instead of being pessimistic and bitter, I'm trying to look at the bright side - because in many ways, God has blessed me. The blessings of protection actually go back more than one year, to the tornado which came within five blocks of my home [25 Apr 09]. So I've survived wind and fire, but please don't root for an earthquake next.

Some Christians talk about God putting a "hedge of protection" around them. The idea actually comes from a statement attributed to the devil in the first chapter of the Biblical book of Job. Satan actually admits there that God has blessed a man's work and possessions. Once in a while, the devil actually can tell the truth....

I'm giving God credit for putting protective hedges around my life and my home in recent months. There's no guarantee about the days ahead, but I pray for safety every day. I'd encourage you to do the same thing. After all, I think God has more angels than Columbus has new police officers.

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