No Strings Attached
It’s been almost two months since I totaled my second car in a year, and I still can hear the initial impact. It’s not a sound that has been duplicated or reoccurs causing me to jump in fear or recollection. It didn’t favor the reverberation that came with bouncing off the cement median and the car hauler when I lost control of my Avalon.
It was unique.
The glass cracked, airbags deployed, and plastic crunched, but the ground didn’t give as I heard the metal interior make contact. The crash thundered causing my mind to freeze and halting the world as if I were hearing gunshots outside. I was already in a level of paralysis when my Murano suddenly lost traction and I was entering the lane of oncoming traffic, my eyes were glued to the school bus that I believed I was going to collide with.
Oddly enough, my first thought wasn’t my safety but the potential condition of the innocent children after one or the other or both errs of taking the corner too fast and expired tires. I wondered if I would be the reason for crying parents. My face plastered and decisions scrutinized on the news and social media igniting dialogue from strangers. One side pointing fingers comparing tiredness to drunkenness and the other sympathizing with a man willing to wake up before the sun and finish before the rooster crows.
By the time I crossed the yellow “do not pass” solid double line I was in disbelief that I was about to get in another accident. My brain took everything in slow motion, but my body couldn’t react to how fast it all happened. I never attempted to grab the wheel in correction. Which, in hindsight, was probably the best decision since I never connected with the thousands-plus-pound bus that watched me skid across its field of vision.
Although I braced myself for the inevitable, my eyes were too focused on the steaming hunk of yellow to look at the ditch I was headed for. As my Adrenal Medulla performed its duty by firing off adrenaline throughout my body, the thought of death never crossed my mind. I had all faith that I would be able to walk away. I’m not sure if it was because I was in the middle of Marvin Sapp’s “Praise Him in Advance” or if it was purely the ignorance embedded in my Y chromosome that leads us to believe we’re invincible. Was it an unwavering belief in the covering of the Almighty? Maybe cockiness, inwardly questioning if I’m a bird or a plane in my fiefdom, exaggerating the size of my small ville.
It has taken me months to process the accident enough to put it in print, and it wasn’t until the recent devastation penetrating the blood that extends outside the immediate that my soul was examined.
Do I value life?
Thinking about accidents that could’ve ended differently, simple-minded youthful decisions that could have resulted in harm or imprisonment. Pondering if I would’ve gotten caught and kicked out of college or if remaining single would have allowed me access to a host of careers. Asking myself if the release of endorphins that comes with the danger of copulation without protection was worth it, especially when the haunting reality that life is taken whether it’s pre- or post-conception. Even more so, when I stare in the mirror and turn away forgetting what my face looks like.
I claim to value the life set before me but it’s as if I sidestep to the grass when the path is seemingly too hot for the shod of the Gospel of Peace. What is my worth when I ignore discernment and disregard the Word that guides me? What is it for me to gain the whole world, family, success, and happiness, only to lose my only soul?
My recent decisions have caused great conviction, doubt, and a barrier in the relationship with the Father. Although I struggle with many things, my biggest is the grace He has for me. I feel as if I’m disingenuous, considering all that He has brought me through like my employment situation and the one surrounding my oldest as well as what He has done for me like the unexpected bonuses and the inexplicable hedge of protection. It’s like what Pastor Ed said in the pulpit, or what Paul wrote, in that, I know I’m not supposed to, but I keep getting drawn in.
Battling with the notion that the unrelenting pain in my back or a haywire circumstance like my computer screen blacking out is a direct result of falling short of the mark. Feeling as if I listen to a 28-minute sermon over a 45-minute that I’m doing Him and my faith a disservice. If I choose to relax instead of homing in on the gift placed in me for the Kingdom, I’m choosing failure over prosperity. I’m not sure if it’s Biblically correct, but correlating being a good servant to favorable outcomes and vice versa for inadequacy.
I believe in repenting, but after an intentional “slip up” I tend to believe the lie that there isn’t a chance for rectification because of my knowledge of the Word. Which only drives a wedge deeper into my relationship, allowing me to be overrun with guilt and shame. I’m finally ready to write this blog because I am constipated with emotion and ashamed of my lack of value in this precious life that I’ve been blessed with.
Sitting in the Food Lion parking lot with Amara in my lap and her tablet singing repetitive songs, I watched her with awe and a tinge of fear. Responsible for her upbringing, surrounding her with people that will further her growth, her safety, and her intelligence. Also, ensuring the family I choose will be conducive to my happiness as well as the paideia of current and future children. A tall order. The fears of parenthood and courtship.
I’m failing to appreciate the treasure of finding a compatible partner that wants God’s abundant life by partaking in pleasures prematurely. I’m neglecting to cherish someone willing to press through the baggage of a blended family by focusing on the negatives. I’m abandoning the impenetrable armor for the bride of Christ as I mistreat the union created to represent and uplift the Kingdom. As mere humans, many factors tie us down, many hesitations that hold us back from experiencing His goodness, but there’s one thing I’m eternally grateful for.
That God loves me, with no strings attached.