I heard the muffled sound of a car horn in the distance. Could it be the mail carrier with a package needing a signature? I looked out the window, and didn’t see any unusual automobiles in the driveway. I glanced around again, and saw the wheelchair out in the sand pit. It was my husband again. Stuck. I fought with the dueling impulses to be concerned, and the tongue-in-cheek thought that I probably needed to fence in my sand pit. Compassion won out, and I hastened to go out and rescue him.
The sand pit was just a shallow layer of sand left over from a building project from some time ago. Grass had covered it as Bermuda loves to send out long runners in sand. My husband and I both know where it is, but he repeatedly get stuck in it with his wheelchair. The wheels simply bury up. I wonder if he thinks he is riding in a chariot…?
“Just come get me out, and don’t say a word about it. And I won’t,” he said. “I was able to get to the car and blow your horn. I forgot my phone in the house.”
“Yeah, like not saying we ought to build a fence around this area?” The devil made me say it…I swear. (Truth is, I couldn’t resist the temptation.) We live in the country, and he’s always getting stuck somewhere. Last time it was in some loose leaves out behind the camper where he was putting out deer corn.
I guess I could get him one of those devices that old people hang around their necks that are advertised as “I’ve fallen and can’t get up!” I could modify it to say, “I’m stuck again and can’t get out!” I’m sure he wouldn’t think that was funny.
Anyway, I placed a chair in front of him where he could sit while I pushed and pulled the now-empty wheelchair out of the sand. Then he transferred, and he was on his way again.
Later, I was thinking how all of us have symbolic “sand pits” lurking along our paths. Sometimes we run off into them, and are too handicapped to walk out. We think we can’t meet the challenge of doing some particular action that will get us on top again. Maybe we have left our connections behind (as in my husband’s phone) or burned bridges with someone.
But God sees us and sends a way of escape (the car horn) or a person who can share our burden, and help us get out of the situation. I remember a young man telling me that when his wife left him a couple of friends took him in and nurtured him until he could heal and get his bearing again. That stuck with me somehow. We are not perfect, and bad stuff happens. We need each other. Not to judge, but to love and support one another.
“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13)