Lessons from a Junker Van!
~By Sharon Czerwien
An eye sore…it is what it is! For at least two summers now, we have had a “junker van” parked near our driveway. It is not too close that it blocks our space, but it has photo-bombed many of the outdoor pictures of my kiddos!
This van even has mismatched license plates, and we called the non-emergency number as a result. Goodness…it could have been stolen property, right!? Nothing ever came of it. As long as the van moved every few days, the van was no worry to law enforcement.
Funnily-enough, the van used to move from one side of the street to the next, or it would move a few feet backwards, etc. However, for the last *many* months, it has sat near our house, sometimes with a flat tire.
Yes, this van could easily have “junker vehicle status” (in my opinion, not to mention my husband’s!). However, I have come to like the van!!
Let me explain why I have never reported this eye sore again.
The van brings safety to my children! (WHAT??...you may wonder.)
Safety, truly! As our house is the first house on a corner, cars quickly whip around and turn right off of one road and onto our road. So, what does the van provide?
The van provides a buffer zone for us! I feel better (as a result of the van) when my children play on the grass near the road. Here are the positives this junker van brings:
1. Other vehicles do not turn as quickly, and they slow down when they see a parked vehicle pulled to the side of the road.
2. Other vehicles drive more in the middle of our road as they pass our home instead of near our curb.
Sometimes what seems like ugliness on the outside actually becomes beautiful in a mother’s eyes. In my eyes, there is purpose in that junker van! PURPOSE!
In life, there can be ugliness. Trials strike. Life’s bumps seemingly complicate things and do not seem pretty in our lives.
Let us consider a passage in the New Testament.
1 Peter 1:6-7a
“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes…”(1 Pet. 1:6-7a).
I have always appreciated the writings of the late Warren Wiersbe. He was known as the “Pastor’s Pastor.” I like how he practically divided up these two verses:
· “Trials meet needs.” (This covers the idea of “if need be” in the passage.)
· “Trials are varied.”
· “Trials are not easy.”
· “Trials are controlled by God.”[i]
This passage teaches that trials (though difficult) are still useful. Our faith can be proven as genuine when we go through some bump and respond well.
Like that silly old van has PURPOSE, the seemingly ugly bumps in life have PURPOSE!
I will further this topic in my next post. I will include words from an endurance runner, too!
Let us just remember to keep a right perspective on that which seems ugly in our lives!
For now, junker van, feel free to park as long as you want. I know you are helping to protect my kiddos!
After two summers of seeing this van (and **right** after I typed this blog post), the van's windows were labeled with dated orange markings, and then it got towed! I was so bummed when this happened, too!! Good thing I took the picture when I did.
-------------------------------------- 1. Warren W. Wiersbe, The Wiersbe Bible Commentary, NT (Colorado Springs: David C. Cook, 2007), 896.