Living

Careful navigating the crosswalks of life

Black Friday shoppers vyed for parking places and pedestrians paled as thoughtless cars brushed by too close for comfort.

Just the thoughts of all the craziness of masses fighting for a bargain will either send your blood pressure soaring or activate your adventure adrenaline. What it did for me was get me pondering crosswalks and intersections.

Growing up with my mom as a tour guide, I thought jay walking was a sport. There weren’t as many designating “ped-xing” signs and walkways back then.

Often times I think some drivers have the ped-xing signs confused with “chicken.” Danger, danger!

For this girl, the city has often held interesting moments at crosswalks. One was many, many years ago when I was downtown for a book signing. I was standing carrying a big box of books and the light was red.

My body was screaming for the light to change or something. My arms were turning blue. So, I took matters into my own hands before they fell off. I looked both ways and proceeded to jaywalk. Woosh! Honk! Screech. Sounds of music? Let me say, no.

After that little experience, I dreaded the return walk. First of all, I feared I’d be carrying back to the car, a full case of books. But this is how it played out. I finished the book signing, enjoyed meeting people, gathered my stuff and made my way down the block to the car. That’s when I learned something.

This time I wasn’t alone at the crosswalk. I looked at the crowd and said something like, “The signal’s broke. It won’t say go.” To which, all heads simultaneously turned and stared at me like I was a country bumpkin come to town. They continued to stare as they pushed the button on the pole. Imagine that a button to change the signal. The walk sign blinked. We safely walked across the street. Wow, new fangled stuff confuses me.

That’ll preach. In a lifetime we’re going to face a whole bunch of crosswalks. There’s the crossroad of faith, of business, of relationship, of health, of integrity to name a few.

Sometimes we get to the end of a road, and just stand there looking at the other side. We shift from foot to foot waiting for someone to say, “Go.” Then we find that the load we are carrying is getting a little too heavy to be patient. We strike out on our own. We jaywalk. That’s a dangerous dance. Many times it’s to the tune of whoosh, splat.

When faced with a road change, you and I need to do more than just stand there like a deer in headlights. For me, I have to go to the One in charge of the crosswalk and say, “Lord, I’m here. I’m waiting for you tell me when. I’ll do my part and be obedient to do the things You command while I wait.”

I find that’s like pushing the “Go” button at the crosswalk. And then I remember there is safety in waiting for the Lord to give the signal to walk on.

At a Crossroads? Carrying a heavy load? Don’t walk without contacting the One in charge! That’s the deal, y’all — and the deal is still on.

Kandi Farris, a freelance correspondent, also is a speaker on matters of faith and values.

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