If only we would listen

You know how it is when you're a child. You want what others have. I had ridden the bikes of my friends. I wanted a bike. And finally, my day came (around 10 years of age) when I was given a bicycle. My bicycle was blue (imagine that). My brother's bicycle was red (I think). I loved my bike. I appreciated my bike. I rode my bike nonstop. I didn't need instruction because I was an expert at riding it.

At that time, we weren't living in the rural. We were living in Washington, Illinois. My "big" city experience. At some point, after buying our bikes, my parents also bought bikes for themselves so we could ride together-as a family.

One lovely summer day, my folks (after securing my baby sister in her baby bike seat) took us biking on streets that seemed to be far away from our house. Streets that we had only traveled to in our cars.

I was excited.

I was ready.

Of course, we were told the rules. We were (1) to be careful and most of all (2)stay together. We were to listen to and obey the wisdom of our father and mother, because they knew best. That was their job. Our job: listen and obey.

We had a great ride.

But, on our return, I got into my know-it-all mindset. I was so pleased to be riding my bike with the freedom of the road beneath my biker wheels. I am a freedom lover; you should know that about me.

We were at a crossroad where street met street (they might call that an intersection). But the street we were on was the stopping street, you know the street where you stop, look and then cross. It was also a street over a railroad track. We would turn left. If we traveled straight ahead we would fall off into the railroad track.

At some point I threw back my head and yelled for my family to follow me. I wanted to be first. In my defense, I am the first born. I put those little feet to the peddles and started out into the intersection. Fast and hard I peddled.

I didn't see the car.

I heard my parents yelling though. I heard the screeching noise from the brakes. And then-it all went to slow motion. That day I rode my bike into the path of an oncoming car. Burned into my memory is the face of a desperate man who tried so hard not to hit me and all the while steering his car and his family toward the drop off.

I kept steering my bike into the car. Inexperience. Then suddenly it was over. He hadn't hit me. He hadn't gone over the edge. He had stopped his car-literally inches away from me.

I caused grief and a near death experience because I hadn't listened to wisdom and direction. I didn't do what I was suppose to do.

My parents didn't punish me for the disobedience of that day. I think we all knew how close I came to....
l did learn some things.

That was my first experience with angels and how they guard me. "For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways." Psalm 91:11 (NIV)

I also learned that breaking the rules can result in disaster if it is played out. "The wise in heart will accept and obey commandments, but the foolish of lips will fall headlong." Proverbs 10:8 (Amplified)

If only we would listen-sometimes, life might just be a bit less chaotic.

Amplified Bible version source: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=proverbs%2010&version=AMP


Arlee Bird said…
You were fortunate. I think I have been blessed with protection throughout my life, and then again I was in a different sort of era than today.

I recall from about age 9 (when I got my first bike) my sister and I and friends would go by ourselves on our bikes several miles from home into unfamiliar neighborhoods. This was San Diego between 1960 -63 and later in Northern Indiana from 1963 -66. Nothing bad ever happened and never did I feel unsafe.

Come to think of it I've engaged in a lot of risky behavior throughout my adult years and have felt God was always providing me protection.

White Dove said…
Oh Teresa....how we would have missed your blogs...you were meant to survive and now we have your wisdom to enlighten our days xx
What a scary story! The driver must have been as terrified as you were. My daughter just learned to ride her bike a couple of weeks ago, so your story sends a chill down my spine! I took her to the park last weekend to ride the pedestrian paths for that very reason. Good point on listening, Teresa.

Mystery Writing is Murder
Ann Elle Altman said…
What a great lesson. I used to read books on my way to school. I wouldn't even look up from my novel before crossing the road and one day a car hit me. I wasn't hurt badly but I know it scared the crap out of me. My worst fear is that my son doesn't listen to my warnings. But, he's an obedient son...

CM said…
Wow, scary! Well told, though. You had me captured til the end. I couldn't wait to see what happened, hoping all along you weren't hurt too bad. Thank goodness it all turned out well!
Jody Hedlund said…
This is a story I would like to tell my children! I often tell them that I want them to obey for their safety, because I want to protect them. And mostly so they will learn to obey God without question when they are grown-ups! Thanks for sharing the story--I'm planning to read it to my children!
Joanne said…
Everyone's hearts must've nearly broken with panic and grief in those few precious moments. I imagine time just stopped in that window, until all was well and everyone took a breath and went on.
JOY said…
What a humbling experience! I had a similar one as a girl too. Almost being hit by a car does humble you!

I love this post. Listening is a big deal to me, mostly because I never felt listened to in my family. Further to that, it is hard for me to let my voice out.

I so appreciate the two verses you included. You can't know how relevant they are to me right now!
Mary Aalgaard said…
This scary story brought back feelings of sitting in the passenger seat when my 15-year-old backed out of the driveway for the first time. I said, "You have to listen to me." He hit the mailbox, but the rest of the trip went fine.
Mason Canyon said…
A lesson learned the hard way usually stays with us while being told something doesn't. You're right, we do need to listen. Glad you weren't hurt.
Lee, I wonder how many times we have saved from incident and didn't know it.

WD, I have to say, you made me cry. I think it's because I often wonder why I am here.

Elizabeth, I was very "head strong". Your daughter will do fine.

AEA-Oh my!

CM- Well at least we know I lived. :)

Jody, You honor me. Now I wish I had written it better.

Joanne, You are right. My family was so shaken. My brother cried after we got home.

Joy, Thank you, the verses me much to me too.

Mary, I laughed out loud when I read your comment. I am sure it was not funny at the time.

MC, I believe I "think" more than I listen- if that makes sense.
How terrifying for everyone involved. I do find life is still full of those “if only I’d listened” moments.
Unknown said…
Thank God for angels and for you!

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