series: Letters of Love
title: #5 The World is Passing Away
date: May 6, 2018
teacher: Jacob Bender
scriptures: 1 John 2:15-17, Matthew 4:1-11, Hebrews 4:15, 2 Chronicles 7:14
I was in a car accident this week.
Until this week, I had never been in one, at least one involving other cars, and I left this particular scene extremely shook up and really sad about the whole thing, honestly I am still processing some things about it, about what I did wrong, about what I could have done differently, about the other people who were involved who were injured…
All four of my daughters were in the van with me, and I was crossing Vernor from the street we live on going straight… and the traffic going one way was totally stopped, and going the other way was flowing and so the traffic that was stopped had created a space for cars to go through because traffic was so backed up… and I looked both ways and I saw a car coming but I guess I thought it was farther away than it was, and did not realize how fast they were going so I pulled out to go straight through and they just smashed right into the side of the van right where Milly and Fiona were sitting. I mean, RIGHT where they were sitting. That car hit the side of our van head on at pretty high speeds.
And yet miraculously all four of my kids and myself walked away from there almost without a scratch…. well, Eloise can’t walk yet but she wasn’t hurt at all… Milly literally had ONE scratch on her, and everyone else was totally fine. Not even phased by it.
I am still waiting to hear about the van. We hope that it is not totaled… but even if it is, do you know what everyone keeps telling me? The exact SAME THING… everyone says: as long as no-one was hurt.
And if you are ever in an accident, especially if there are other people in your car, you know the instant thought… the first thing in your mind the moment it happens:
is everyone alright?
I looked back… kids, is everyone ok? is anyone hurt? can everyone move… is anyone stuck. Is anyone bleeding… did anyone hit your head?
whatever it is… then you get out…
and when I got out, a crowd had already gathered and the people in the car were all crying… and so of course you feel like crying too because of the pain that someone else feels, and its especially difficult knowing you were involved in that.
so after you make sure that your own family is okay, you go and see if anyone from the other car is injured. And the ambulance comes just to be safe and they check all of the people… the police listen to what happened…
AND THEN THE VERY LAST THING THAT HAPPENS after the ambulance leaves and you have made sure that everyone is okay (and if anyone is not okay then they leave on that ambulance) and then, finally, you call a tow truck and evaluate the damage to your vehicle… and you call the insurance company. But its the very last priority. Because cars are cool and helpful and convenient for our lives… but they don’t matter. In the scheme of life and all that is significant, the things that DO matter ALWAYS are our priority in the darkest, scariest moments.
The police do not run to the car and make sure you aren’t going to have to go buy a new one. They run to people. Our instincts always begin with people because something innately tells us that only in people is a value found that you can not put a number on…
We know this, in tragedies.
But in the day when we are NOT facing something urgent or catastrophic or dangerous or scary… its not always like that.
one of the most common traps that people fall into in this life is the trap of stuff… the trap of a life that says “I have to work more so that I can have more - ” and what we don’t realize is that often in our ambitions and aspirations to take care of our families and leave our legacies, we are building at the expense of the things that we ultimately are convinced that we are doing it for.
We are missing the life that we are working for.
THIS IS the worlds system. THIS IS the way of the world. and John has to warn us “Do not love the world or the things in the world.” BECAUSE THE THINGS OF THE WORLD ARE ENTICING. they are desirable. But they are also distracting.