The weather was absolutely gorgeous here in Ohio yesterday afternoon and that meant just one thing for me – it was a convertible day! Although I had a sermon and papers to write, there was no way I couldn’t sneak in a quick “joy ride.” There is something about putting the top down and driving with the wind on my face, and a breeze blowing through my hair. It’s like the Spirit breathing life into my body and soul. Driving in the open air on winding country roads is liberating and allows me to commune with Creation and its Creator. My car is sacred space for me – a revered vehicle on life’s journey – because in it I pray and sing and cry out to God, my traveling companion.
Last summer in my Homiletics class we were asked to give a five-minute introduction of ourselves. A few weeks earlier, I had attended the East Ohio Conference local pastors’ licensing school. Each student there had to share her/his “call” story, and although the details of each person’s story were significant, I must admit that my interest waned by the time we got to the 30th person in the room! Wanting to avoid a similar experience in my Homiletics class a few weeks later, I got creative and wrote my life story in verse. (Dr. Seuss was my hero!). As I took my convertible ride yesterday, I was reminded of it and I am including it here for your enjoyment and amusement. Written in common meter (86.86), it can easily be sung to the tunes Amazing Grace, O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing, and many other hymns. In fact, I actually did sing part of it. Imagine that. J May you know today that God is a traveling companion on this journey of life.
Go grab your shades, let’s take a ride.
The top has been put down.
The weather’s beautiful outside.
Let’s take a cruise through town.
I’ll tell you all about my life,
I promise not to bore.
The journey has begun, hold tight.
Just wait for what’s in store.
September twenty-third’s the day
When from the womb I came.
With tears my mother, Kathy, said,
“Dear Robin is her name.”
My father, Robert, held me close,
He’d wished I been a boy.
Then suddenly what mattered most,
This girl – his pride and joy.
From that day on the journey’s had
A lot of twists and turns.
Events – some joyous and some sad –
With many lessons learned.
I’ll quickly highlight just a few,
For we must cruise along
With wind in hair, take in the view,
And I’ll burst into song.
In elementary school I played
The flute and clarinet,
But when our howling dog did stray,
My family got upset.
So I turned in my instruments
And joined the choir instead
My life’s been filled with song e’er since
And through it joy I spread.
At twelve I learned to ride a bike,
No, not the pedaled kind
But one with revving engines like
A Honda by design.
That summer Dad and I did take
A bike trip in the rain.
When we began we did not know
It was a hurricane!
We donned our rainsuits and drove on
With leather jackets, too.
The leather dye our skin then turned
A funky shade of blue.
My days of biking are long gone
But I still get a thrill
When through my hair the wind does blow
In my convertible.
Another story I will tell
About my first career.
I taught in Philadelphia
And tried to spread some cheer.
But it was hard, I will not lie.
The kids were really bad.
I tried my very best and yet
Some days they made me mad.
But I determined there one day
To make their learning fun.
We sang our way through math problems
And their respect I won.
As you might guess my favorite books
Were by old Dr. Seuss.
I rapped The Cat in the Hat for them,
Our silliness let loose.
It’s been eight years since I resigned
From my position there
To work with new technology
And training in healthcare.
It was a start-up company
We built it from the ground.
Patients with heart monitors,
A new career I’d found.
But God was working on MY heart,
A call to ministry.
I stomped my feet and clenched my fists
No way could God use me!
For years I struggled with that call
And finally gave in,
For then I handed God the wheel,
Oh, what a ride it’s been!
My time is running short by now
Five minutes nearly done.
You’ve learned some things about my life
While driving in the sun.
I hope you have enjoyed the ride
In my convertible.
The scenic view and company
Have been enjoyable.