February 3, 2020

This past weekend, Shannon and I hooked up our travel trailer and drove to the Huntsville State Park. We were celebrating my nephew’s wedding at the First United Methodist Church of Huntsville. Because of the beautiful wedding, weather, reception, and the breathtaking camping spot, the weekend couldn’t have been any better.

One of the things I really enjoy about camping is watching people – not in a creepy, serial killer kind of way, but just enjoying seeing people having a good time with family and friends.

There’s something magical about how friendly and tolerant people are, until it is time to hook up the trailer and go home.

Yesterday, as I sat outside enjoying the sunshine, I noticed a woman helping her husband hook up their trailer. The man slowly backed up the pickup, staring in the side mirror, guided by his wife’s hand gestures. It did not go well.

Time after time, he would back up the trailer and when his wife would scream, he’d pull forward and try again. It was easy to see they were getting very frustrated with each other.

My first inclination was to walk down to their site and offer to help, but my common sense kicked in and I realized there are some situations that don’t need my expertise. Sometimes people need to figure things out for themselves.

After many attempts, punctuated by some less-than-supportive comments, the couple was able to successfully get their trailer hooked to the truck, and off they went. I’m sure their drive home was filled with nothing but wedded bliss.

For Shannon and me, the problem is never hooking up the trailer. That’s because I have learned to always do what she tells me to (and my truck has a backup camera). Our problems start when she decides to supervise my driving. That’s never a good thing.

Even though I don’t remember it happening, somewhere in our wedding vows, Shannon promised to “help” me drive with constructive, affirming comments, gasps, small screams, and quickly putting her hands on the dash to brace for impact. It makes for a delightful experience.

Yesterday, as Shannon “helped” me drive home, I started to get frustrated and then I remembered how the couple hooking up their trailer had probably ruined a wonderful camping experience because they grew impatient with each other.

So as Shannon “helped” me drive, I calmly explained to her that she had nothing to worry about because of my cat-like ninja reflexes. She didn’t buy it but I found my comment so entertaining, I didn’t get angry with her supervision.

While you may not be hooking up a trailer, or have a spouse “help” you drive, more than likely you will encounter something that has the potential to frustrate or even ruin your day. Don’t let it.

Life is too short to let little, minor irritants prevent us from truly living and enjoying the wonderful blessings that God has place in each of our lives. It’s all about perspective.

This is what the psalmist meant by saying, “This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalm 118:24)

No matter what you face, remember, today is a gift from God. Use it wisely.

Prayer: Dear Gracious Heavenly God, fill my heart with gratitude, my mind with joy, and my mouth with praise. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Yesterday, my cat-like ninja reflexes and Shannon’s supervision kept the truck between the ditches. It was a good day.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.
Tom Robbins