My father used to ride his bicycle all around town. His commute to work each day was about 20 miles round-trip and he would hop on his bright blue Schwinn bike and head to the office. He had a child seat on the back of the bike that he used to bring me along on his journeys when I was really young. Even at such a young age, I enjoyed the excitement of being on a bicycle, and experiencing the outdoors apart from a vehicle.
One Saturday, he loaded me up in the child seat and we rode over to the doughnut shop to pick up a box of doughnuts to take over to my grandparents house. My father handed me the box and told me to hold on tight as we began the journey to my grandparent’s house. A few blocks down the road we hit a bump, and I dropped the box. Doughnuts graced the roadway intersection, spilling their jelly filled guts out in sugar-coated splendor. I began to cry.
My dad, while I am sure he was frustrated, comforted me and told me it would be OK. We went back to the shop for another box and started the ride again. This time I held on to the box for dear life until we reached our destination. He never yelled at me, but rather just sternly told me to be a bit more careful.
I was thinking about this story last week after I lost my temper in a conversation where I felt cornered in blame. I started thinking about my father and his forgiving/slow to anger attitude. I had to pray for forgiveness.
Many of us go through life and never say the things we want to say to the people we love. Many of the circumstances over the past year have brought me to a place where I have really grown to appreciate the love and support my parents have shown me. I realize what a caring man my Dad really was as he raised me. I am so grateful for this rare gift.
Is it not a reflection of Christ’s love? How many times is God taking us for a journey in life, and we drop the box of Doughnuts? How many times does he take us back to the shop to pick up the pieces, and let us try again? His patience overwhelms me, and we need to show this same trait to people around us.
It is a strange thing growing older and seeing things from a new perspective. I am now the guy riding my bike around town and seeing the world. It is now my reactions/actions that are impacting the world for better or for worse. How am I representing Him as my heavenly father when someone around me drops the box of doughnuts or blames me for hitting the bump in the road?
My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.