Today while I was talking with a friend, it brought up some memories from my childhood that I had forgotten about. The first was from the summer of 1996. I went to Mrytle Beach, South Carolina with my friend Beth and her family, as she was moving there to go to college. While we were there, Hurricane Bertha hit. We had vacated our hotel right on the beach and were at Beth’s apartment, when Bertha came rolling through. Just after it had passed where her apartment was, we thought “wouldn’t it be fun to go chase after it, kinda like that movie ‘Twister'”. So she and I got in her car and started driving through the city, in pursuit of Hurricane Bertha, dodging flying tree branches and other random objects, until we were told by the police to head back to shelter.
The second memory that came to mind today was a few years after that, when I was all alone at my dad’s house. My dad has a small home up in the mountains, away from most of civilization, and home to many of God’s creatures. It was often that you could look out the window and see deer eating from our lawn or the fruit trees, or hear the sounds of wolves or some other creature not too far away. Well one day I had heard a noise outside and when I looked out of the door, I saw a black bear that had knocked over our burner barrel, filled with garbage, and it was tearing through the garbage, making a huge mess. For whatever crazy reason, I ran outside onto the porch, and began yelling at the bear to stop, trying to get him to move on. He, however, was not in the mood to be yelled at by me, and he stood straight up and began growling at me. I eventually ran into the house, locking the doors behind me (as if a bear could open an unlocked door?) and began panicking as it started to move closer to the porch. I guess he thought it best to move on, as he just walked on passed the porch and back into the woods.
After telling my friend these stories today, it made me think of how I can be so quick to put myself into stupid, dangerous situations, without thinking through the possible consequences of my actions. It is as true now as it was back then, but now it is more related to relationships with others, rather than dangerous animals or nature. At church we are currently studying Love.Sex.The Bible: a study of the Song of Solomon. We are being challenged to look at our dating relationships in accordance to what the scriptures say. There have been countless times that I have gotten myself into reckless and dangerous relationships, and a few times that God has saved me from them. I am learning that I need to see myself how God sees me, and to really take time and use caution in my relationships, whether its a dating relationship, a friendship, relationships with coworkers, etc. I have learned that living in the moment or for the moment is not what God wants for me…..He wants me to live for Him and His kingdom and make decisions and choices that are for eternity.