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Myers: Hold your father's hand to navigate world's dangers

POSTED: November 10, 2008 5:00 a.m.

If your garage is anything like ours, it’s not exactly a kid-friendly place. Especially in the dark.

One evening we came home, pulled into the garage and started piling out. We took our sweet time doing it, as there were groceries to get, and Chloe insisted on listening to a song on the radio until it ended.
Whatever the reason, we sat there long enough for the light on the garage door opener to turn off. The switch to turn it back on was on the wall next to the door.

I could have walked over to the light switch, turned it on and come back to get the kids. I could have even turned on the van’s headlights, gotten the kids inside, then come back to turn the lights off. Being a guy, however, and wanting to make as few trips as possible (it’s genetic, ladies, much like eye color or back hair), I deemed it safe to walk to the door in the dark.

I got Chloe out of her seat and took her by the hand. Together, we sidestepped the lawn mower. We avoided the sharp corner of a table. We stepped around the bag of fertilizer sticking out into our path.

As we navigated our little maze, I noticed something about Chloe. She never hesitated. She never questioned. She held on to my hand and allowed me to guide her through the obstacle course that is our garage.

Could she see in the dark? Not very well. But I believe Chloe knew that even though she couldn’t see in that darkened garage, I knew where I was going. She trusted me to get her through it. All she had to do was hold my hand and follow my lead.

And she was right. After all, I knew where the lawn mower was. I knew where the table stood. I even knew about the bag of fertilizer. Because I knew about these things, I was able to help her avoid them.

But I wouldn’t have been able to help her if she hadn’t been holding my hand. Sure, I could have pointed them out to her as we walked along. “Watch out for that lawn mower, baby.” But if she can’t see the lawn mower in the first place, she can’t see to avoid it, either. No, the best option is for me to take her by the hand and lead her around the obstruction.

This world is often a dark and dangerous place. If we try to walk through it on our own, we’re going to end up getting ourselves hurt.

What we need to do, then, is let our heavenly father guide us. Let him take us by the hand and guide us through life.

In John 16:33, Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” He has overcome the world, and will help us overcome it, too. But only if we trust him, place our hand in his and let him guide us through it.

Parrish Myers is pastor of Pine Crest Baptist Church in Gainesville. His column runs every other week in Sunday Life.



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