A priest and pastor from the local parishes were standing by the side of the road holding up a sign that reads, "The End is Near! Turn yourself around now before it's too late!"
They planned to hold the sign up to each passing car. "Leave us alone you religious nuts!" yelled the first driver as he sped by. From around the curve they heard screeching tires and a big splash.
“Do you think,” said one clergy to the other, “we should just put up a sign that says ‘Bridge out’ instead?”
Sometimes a little humour goes a long way! Sometimes a little humor has a serious message! Sometimes a little humour hammers home a point in a way that nothing else can! Most of us love a good joke or story and if there is a something to be learned from it then so much the better.
I am sure that the clergy in the above joke had the best intentions even if the message was not as clear as it could have been for the immediacy of the situation. However, when we think about it we realize that we can sometimes be like the driver of the car, rushing along not giving thought to the deeper aspect of the message and thinking those who are trying to slow us down, warn us about the follies of our actions are nuts. After all we know what we are doing.....right?
“What things get tossed our way in life that we are often not prepared for?” The answer is unique to every person who attempts to answer it. The trials and tribulations of life are generally not planned and prepared for, impossible to brace yourself to absorb the impact. Even when you know difficult times are ahead it is impossible to truly know how you will respond until it happens. Joys and celebrations are often more easily planned and even when they are not are more willingly received and embraced. It would be great if we were able to turn ourselves around before it is too late but generally speaking how easy is it to convince someone that a particular route is bad, a life altering decision is the wrong one? We are more likely to be like the driver and scoff at the warning and zoom along our merry way thinking that we know what we are doing. The warnings of those with good intentions will likely not deter us from the path that we intend to travel. The message can be clear or ambiguous but most of us will believe that we know what we are doing! The second aspect of the warning is clear there is still time to make a change in our decision, to become more informed.
Now what about hindsight...it is always perfect vision! In light of what we have rushed through, the warnings that we may have ignored, the voices of caution that have been tossed aside we look back and realize that maybe we should have been more cautious, certainly listened more to the voices of reason and experience. Yet there is something to be learned by the experience. No experience sticks with us as a reminder quite like those where we make mistakes and hopefully learned from them as opposed to constantly repeating them.
So while the message, the end is near, turn yourself around before it is too late was not clear for a bridge out situation it is an important message for us as we zoom through life. Turn yourself around ...slow down before it is too late to enjoy life and the beauty that surrounds us, before we wander so far down a dark path that we think there is no hope of return, before we close ourselves off to all that is good, before we lose sight of the good that still exists in the world and in us, it is perhaps an inexhaustible list of things that we can do to change, to improve on the self. Turn yourself around...is something that we can all benefit from at various times in our lives. Change is always possible.