Slideshow image

Atgyweirio ar gyfer fy enaid  

Miriam and I were enjoying our dream trip, driving counter clockwise across the United Kingdom. Graced with plenty of time and sufficient cash, we felt the bright enthusiasm of explorers navigating from castle to cathedral. Kent, Coxwold, York, Edinburgh and Oban, were all in our rear view mirror when we turned south to Wales. It was a challenge to follow signage as we targeted Llandudno on the Welsh coast. The Welsh language has an abundance of consonants in exotic combinations. (As evidenced by the title above!) I was squinting at a jumble of highway letters when it happened.  

In a blink, my driver’s window exploded. I had a lap covered in glass and the wind sucking papers into highway litter. I pulled over and checked for damage to ourselves and the car. Besides the window, everything else was fine. But clearly the car needed repair. At a nearly deserted petrol station on a fully deserted side road, I tried to interpret the Welsh phone book for glass repair. The directory was indecipherable and the locals were of little help. I guessed that whatever shop I could find, the fix would cost dearly. Ultimately we stuck to the side roads and found our guest house on the coast. As I continued my quest for repair, the guest house owner jolted me with a question. “If this is a rental, why not call the rental company?” The question hit me like an exploded window! Of course! The company will take care of this. I called and within the hour, I had a new car and the damaged vehicle was taken away. What a relief!  

You may smile at my slowness to reach the obvious answer. I defend my dullness with a default principle. If I break it, I should fix it. My instinctive reaction was to assume responsibility and take ownership of the problem. Regardless that the car wasn’t mine and that I had insurance for such events, I knee jerked with a sense of personal liability and obligation. It was the wrong answer rooted in an admirable value. And lest you giggle too loudly at my misplaced duty, I remind you that we do the same with our souls.  

There is much repair needed in our spiritual lives. We crack, break and sometimes implode. Regardless of the cause, we instinctively believe that it is our job to clean up the broken shards and make it whole. By countless efforts we hunt for answers that are within our resources. People applaud our sense of accountability and we feel balanced by matching our efforts to our injury, but it is not ours to do. We lack the ability and authority. We are God’s by purchase and He alone has the power of restoration. I do not say that we are passive. Submitting and trusting God is no small task. But to grip the work of God in our own hands, is a weight beyond us. Call on God and taste the tenderness of His grace. What a relief!