Handlebars. Learning to hang on.

Bobby was the teenage neighbor boy.
Three motorcycle riding experiences with him.

The first, watching him learn how to drive. He pulled the throttle wide open and sped across the driveway, feet flying out behind him and hit the side of a dog house.

The second, after he learned how to handle the motorcycle, he would take me for rides. I would sit behind him as he zipped up and down the mile-long gravel road we lived on. If he went too fast, I would squeeze my arms, which were secured around his waist so tight he had to slow down to catch his next breath.

The third, he tried to teach me to ride his motorcycle which ended up with me in the bushes with the front tire wedged between two trees.

I was thinking about all this life throws at us. I was thinking about things my mom often said when the situations around us were piling up.

Life can be overwhelming, feet behind you as you barely hang on, squeeze and grip with all your might to stay seated, or crash in the bushes messy kind of overwhelming.

Sometimes it feels like we are just clinging on to survive. When life is out of control like this, we have to squeeze and latch onto the unforced rhythms of Grace. Sometimes just a snatch or a phrase of scripture that keeps you holding fast like handlebar grips.

Like these,

“I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.”

“My boundaries fall for me in pleasant places.”

“When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Lord will raise a standard.”

“I will lay my head down in Peace, and sleep.”

“Perfect love casts out fear.”
“He will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You.”