I went snowmobiling yesterday and it was fantastic! I love my husband so much because in so many instances, he won't take "no" for an answer. You see, I'm basically a chicken. If I had my way, I would probably still be riding a bicycle with training wheels. I like safety and rules - going 55 miles and hour. But my husband makes me stretch my boundaries - my limits.
Yesterday I was stretched by going snowmobiling. Three couples rode on a bus for 45 minutes, out into the snowy wilderness. I had cold feet, not only figuratively, but literally! We were late starting and I wished we would be early stopping! I had on stockings, long underwear, ski pants, two sweaters, ski jacket, gloves, goggles, and then we added helmets, boots and bib overalls. I could barely "moon walk," much less straddle a snowmobile seat. Please, can't I just drink hot chocolate in the warming room or at least ride behind you? No! "Ladies and gentlemen - start your engines." Help! There were eight of us in our party with two guides, one in the front, the other in the back to help. Why didn't he hear me yell, "Help?" Off we went across a huge field. Hey, this is a cinch! Wait a minute - why are we going into the woods on a tiny trail? There are trees on either side of me - we're climbing a mountain - there are no trees on one side, just a cliff! You want me to lean to the left - lean to the right - go team - go team - fight, fight, fight? Help!
Yea, we get to stop! One of the ladies went off the trail and fell off. Great! If I do that, can we stop again?
"Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines!" On and on and on we went. Up and down - round and about, on this narrow little trail. Hey, have you thought about using a bulldozer to widen this thing? Finally we arrived at the meadows. Great! Can we go home now? Is the bus coming to get us? It's getting dark! Don't wolves and coyotes and bears and Indians come out at night? Help!
Our guide said, "You have 15 minutes to ride around in the meadows at full speed, so go have fun!"
You mean we can play chase and try to run into each other at 45 miles an hour. Great! Help! Does anybody care that it's getting dark? Thanks for the hot chocolate and the brownie, but really, I'd rather have the warming house, if you don't mind!
"Time's up. We go back the same way we came." Isn't there a shortcut? I know the moon is out, but really, it is a little dark. I mean, I can't see! Help!
Each snowmobile had one little dim headlight and two even smaller red taillights. We were to stay ten yards from each other and off we went. In the moonlit night, the trees became silvery - the darkness enveloped us and made the boundaries so pronounced. You felt safer in the darkness than in the light. I had one focus - the two little red lights in front of me - up, down, over, around, again. Halfway we stopped, turned off our lights and engines, to soak up the beauty. The snow made the world glow - stars, moon, winter quiet. It was breathtaking - literally and figuratively.
Finally, we arrived safely back. Finally, we got to go into the warming house. The lady of the house was very much pregnant with her fourth child. She was the brownie-maker and you could tell, an earth mother. In this totally isolated world, she had brought warmth to a home. A wood fire was burning in a stove and a little stained-glass church was hanging in the window.
The picture that popped into my mind was the wonderful painting of Christ standing in the dark of the night, holding a lantern, which illuminates part of His face. He's showing me the way - drawing me to Him. You can't see anything to the right or to the left - dark, just like it was in the woods; but a safe dark, a limiting, boundaried dark - which makes it imperative to follow the light - His Light.
The snowmobile, with its single light, brought me to this safe haven - a house with a little stained-glass church hanging in the window. My Lord is bringing me to a safe haven - a home - His Light shows me the Way.
"Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines!"