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The Christian Life

Are You Buckled In By The Belt of Truth?

By Wendy L Macdonald

Although her driving record may no longer be pristine, Wendy states that her sin record has been wiped clean! “I’m saved, I’m safe. I’m buckled in by the Belt of Truth.”

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Road Trip Gone Wrong

Belt of TruthWhen I watched the tow-truck load my busted up car onto the flatbed, I realized my vehicle wasn’t the only thing that was broken. Sure, my seatbelt saved my life; but my spirit sunk to one of its lowest levels ever.

The day started off peacefully. I got up at my usual time and prepared to leave for an overnight trip to visit one of my favorite friends. My husband surprised me by not only detailing my car, he placed chocolates, cashews, and a card on the passenger seat. And besides filling up my love tank—he filled up the gas tank too.

My daughter picked a bucket of blueberries from our garden and handed them to me as I packed up my just as blue Pathfinder. I waved as I drove down the driveway. Yes—I was going to spend some time with someone who gets me and accepts me.  

An hour later I became confused about which direction to go. There was no mention of my destination on either of the road signs. I stayed left. I found out later I’d made the right choice; however, I doubted myself and began looking for a way out. I exited the highway and found myself in unfamiliar territory again. As I approached a green light at the next intersection, I decided to turn left.

A Scary Situation

A moment later, a vehicle sideswiped mine, and my world spun deeper out of control. I struggled to brake and strove to steer my car away from traffic.  A scraping noise told me my car was badly damaged. Finally, it came to a stop, and I felt grateful and amazed I wasn’t broken, but my spirit was crushed to the core.

Belt of TruthA man approached and suggested I move my car to the left. So I started it back up, and my Pathfinder hobbled farther from the center line, grinding and groaning like a dying dragon. Later I noticed it had a blown back tire and a damaged front wheel well that rubbed against the front tire.

I turned and looked out my window. The other car sat in the middle of the intersection, twenty meters behind mine. It was crushed on its passenger side too. The occupants looked as though they also fared well. My stiff and sore body felt like it usually does by the end of the day—except this was just the beginning of it. I opened my door and a bystander suggested I get out of the front seat in case the airbag engaged.

I nodded and asked, “Has someone called 911?”

“Yes,” he said.

“Are the people in the other car okay?”

“They seem to be mostly just shook up.”

Relieved, I sat down on the back seat with the door wide open.   

A lady from a nearby car called out, “Do your lights still work? You should turn the hazards on.”

“Good idea.” I nodded and then turned them on.

She smiled and said something like, “I hope everything works out okay. I feel for you.”

“Thank you,” I said. “I’m stiff, and I feel overwhelmed. I hope the other people are okay.”

She wished me well—and I have a feeling she prayed for me too.

Green For Go

I sat in the back seat because my legs were too wobbly to stand on. Sirens sounded all around us and soon a police car, an ambulance, and a firetruck took charge of the situation.

Belt of TruthHow and why did the accident happen? Had I turned left on a green arrow? Or did I turn left on a green light without yielding to oncoming traffic? Why would I have done the latter? That’s not like me. I’m paranoid about left turns. I don’t take chances with them.  

A policewoman asked to see my driver’s license. I handed it to her. She held out a mic and asked me to explain what happened. I told her exactly what was already swimming around in my muddled up mind. I told her I couldn’t remember anything except that I turned left on a green light. I didn’t remember seeing any cars coming or whether it was a green arrow or not.

All I saw was green for go. And so I did.

An ambulance attendant introduced himself and asked me if I was experiencing any pain? I explained it was hard to say because I have osteoarthritis—I’m always in pain. But I mentioned my wrist was more sore than usual. He asked me if I was able to walk. I took a few steps and told him I was okay physically, but emotionally I felt overwhelmed.

The accident was one more thing piled onto a stack of stuff that was making it hard for me to think straight. I had been staggering through life for weeks.    

Calling On God

Nothing is sorer, or sorrier than a broken and contrite spirit that doesn’t know who to call on. But I knew who to call on then. I hauled out my phone and called my dear husband and left a message. Then I called my daughter and asked her to leave a message at his workplace in case he wasn’t carrying a phone with him. I called my friend’s house and let her know I wouldn’t be able to visit her.  

And I called on God to help everyone to be okay. I believed He could and would make something good come from this horrible situation. I held onto this hope so I wouldn’t drown in despair.  

A couple of days later, while I was praying about the fact I was going to be held responsible for the accident unless a witness showed up to say otherwise, I realized it’s best to stop when in doubt than to proceed and potentially stumble. I should have stopped and asked for directions the moment my fear of being lost ignited (I’m living proof women can be guilty of not asking for directions too.). I should have called on God right then and there instead of ignoring the Still Small Voice who suggested I stop at the tourist booth I saw.

It’s better to pause than panic because fear is a dangerous fuel.

Perfect Love Banishes Fear

Belt of TruthFear sucks sanity out of your brain and replaces it with adrenaline. Fight or flight aren’t right when you’re behind the wheel of a vehicle in a busy intersection.

And although I had a pristine driving record for almost forty years, it doesn’t mean much once you’ve marred it with an accident that could have been prevented by yielding to the Maker instead of wallowing in fear.

And here’s where I make an analogy, because—if you know me—you know I can’t write anything without inserting one: Perfect Love banishes fear. If we want to make it to the Promised Land, we shouldn’t depend on a perfect walking record to get us there because no one is perfect but Jesus.

He’s the Son of God who bore the sin of the world so we could claim a clean record through faith and trust in Christ. Jesus is the insurance and assurance of salvation so we won’t be towed to the junkyard. We’re children of the King, so we’ll be ushered into a pleasant ever after place where the Best Friend anyone could ever hope to have will share His inheritance with us.

No blame will be sought. No hearts will be fraught. Because we will have been bought by the Prince of Peace.

No intersections of indecision and no left turns to oblivion will exist in this place of bliss.

Buckled In By The Belt Of Truth

According to my insurance company, I don’t have a pristine driving record anymore; however, I’m assured by the Word of God, my name is recorded in the Book of Life where my sin record has been wiped clean by the blood of the Living Christ.

I’m saved, I’m safe. I’m buckled in by the Belt of Truth. Are you?

Deuteronomy 33:12 NIV says:

“Let the beloved of the LORD rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the LORD loves rests between his shoulders.”

  

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Wendy L. Macdonald

Wendy is writer, poet, photographer, and contributor to our Christian internet radio station, HopeStreamRadio.
Read and hear more from Wendy L. Macdonald on the contributor’s page or on her personal website.

Wendy’s show, “Walking With Hope” airs on HopeStreamRadio, providing observations and insights from both her life experiences and her knowledge of God.

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Images courtesy of:

Cory Bouthillette

Mark Jefferson Paraan

Carlos Alberto Gómez Iñiguez

Carl Nenzen Loven

Leio McLaren

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