Friday, February 20, 2009

Why I’ll Never Be Called St. David

Lest there’s any misunderstanding, just because I don’t use profanity or swear words doesn’t mean I’m a saint. The fact is I can use “polite” language in very ungodly ways through my tone of voice, my angry attitudes, and worse. Not surprisingly, that happens most where I spend the greatest amounts of time alone or with my family: at home and in the car.

I can get so miserable in the car three or four times a year that my family finally bought me a GPS unit for Christmas. As anyone in Portland may recall, we had a bit of snow and ice around that time. Before heading to our church’s elders and wives New Year’s Eve party, my wife, Renée, and I went on a couple of errands. I hadn’t learned how to use the GPS unit yet, however, so I got turned around. Thankfully, Renée has a great sense of direction.

Unfortunately, my frustration at getting turned around while driving on icy roads added a bit too much undercurrent when I asked Renée which way to head back toward Sunnyside Road. I honestly wasn’t frustrated at Renée. The opposite. I love the fact she knows her way around so well. But what Renée heard was frustration, not thankfulness. So she froze up.

I looked over at Renee, knowing she knew exactly which way to go. Still nothing. “Well?” I snapped. Now Renée knew I was dumping my frustration on her. Of course, at first that was the farthest thing from my mind. But frustration at this is clearly a loss of self-control that can swing quickly to frustration with a loved one. Renée knew that. And sure enough, that’s what I did.

Thankfully, since New Year’s I’ve learned how to use my new GPS unit. But believe me, it will never make me a saint.

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