Photo Credit: © 2006 Lynne Holder

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Driving in Snow 101

I'm from upstate New York. We got more than our share of snowfall every winter. Luckily for us, the country road in Onondaga County that my house was on was just below the "I give up" point for snow plows. When they gave up, the snow blowers were sent in. When they gave up, the people up the road got stuck and made their way by snowmobile.

Snow 1, Inhabitants 0.

In these winter conditions, I learned to drive, and I made it out alive. Studded tires, tire chains in the trunk of the car--all a normal part of living in the snow belt--still weren't enough if I didn't learn how to handle a sudden loss of traction to avoid going into a spin. The natural reaction is to slam on the brakes and turn the steering wheel the opposite direction of a skid, but if you don't like hospitals, you better turn into it. I know it is counter-intuitive to turn the direction you feel is heading you into disaster, but taking your foot off the brake and turning the steering wheel into the skid will give you the best chance of avoiding your local healthcare system, and a lot of pain.

This week a very gifted counselor, Tim, used driving into a skid as a metaphor for handling life's painful situations. In this second year of our marriage, my husband and I hit our first relationship crisis and went into a skid. We were heading for a dangerous spin. I had fixated on the object (my pain and its cause). The man of my dreams, the love of my life, suddenly became someone to protect myself from, but steering away from him, and not into him and the hurt he now represented, made matters only worse.

"Turn into the pain", Tim told me.

He spent nearly 2 hours with us. In that time, using this metaphor as well as reminding us of what and who we are as redeemed children of God, we were able to look squarely into each other's eyes and affirm all the good that we are and have between us. And we purposed to see each other this way, always, to forgive, and to empathize.

Steering straight into the pain is scary and it's counter-intuitive. It's the smartest move I made this week.

Thanks, Tim. And thanks to God for the forgiveness and healing we have through Christ, my husband is the man of my dreams, the love of my life.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. --Phillipians 4:8

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus --Romans 8:1