Joy Riding – Revisited

It has been a while since I have written. Quite honestly, I have done a lot of writing over the last few weeks – for school, for sermons, and for me personally. I have previously posted sermons or papers (or thoughts from some of my papers) on here, but I just haven’t felt like sharing some of my recent writings in such a public forum. The writing that I am sharing here today is actually a repost of an entry I wrote last Spring about “joy riding.” The weather here in Ohio this week has been lovely and though I have been in classes, I have snuck in a few quick convertible rides in my “spare” time. 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.

Two years ago in my Intro to 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 a 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 (the part in blue). Imagine that. J May you know today that God is a traveling companion on this journey of life. Until next time, peace …

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.

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