Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Rational Fear or Irrational?

Most people have some kind of phobic-like fear such as heights, spiders, or water. For me it's lightning. I've never been struck by lightning, and don't know anyone personally who has. Yet, ever since childhood I've never liked it.

And, as an adult I came to like it less when I would hear about fires started by lightning strikes, and then the most recent thing, people being struck by lightning because a bolt hit the umbrella they were using thanks to the metal handle and pole. It's like walking around with a lightning rod in your hand!

Some of you may be thinking, "She's a Christian. Doesn't she trust God for her safety?" And my answer to that is: yes, I do trust God, but I also say He gave me a brain and common sense that tells me it's not safe to be out walking with lightning shooting from the sky. Yet, I see people doing it all the time.

I live in a condo complex with only non-assigned outdoor parking available. I love the grassy front yard my windows look out over, and then beyond that, the cul-de-sac, and beyond that the parking. If I park in front, I have to cross a parking lot, the cul-de-sac, and then take a long sidewalk up to my building's front door.

If I park in the back where I do, I might park a tad closer to my building, but to get to MY backdoor I have to walk under a canopy of very tall trees. And we all know the warning that's been out there for years. Don't stand under a tree during a lightning storm! So if such a storm is in progress when I arrive home, I sit in the car and wait it out. At least now I can get radar on my cell phone, so I can  know how long my wait will be. If it looks like it's never going to end, I do give in and race, heart pounding, for my door, praying the whole way. LOL

Last night was one of those nights. I had been enjoying a lovely dinner with my Bible study group when we looked outside and saw dark clouds approaching. Then someone said, "There's lightning we'd better make a dash for our cars." I froze and told them I'd wait it out and to go on head. I took the teasing for a while, because they thought I was joking. I finally said, "No joke." They tried to convince me it was better to make a run for my car, and when it was apparent no one would leave me there, I agreed. One friend even offered to follow me home and walk me inside! I told her no, I wasn't that much of a wimp. Liar, liar, pants on fire.

By the time I arrived home, having to park further away because all the close-in slots were taken, lightning was streaking across the sky right over my head. Walk through those trees? No way! The clouds were moving fairly fast, and it hadn't started raining yet. So I waited and, suddenly, a kid ambles along, bouncing his basketball. No fear in the boy, but here sat a woman in her car many years older than he, afraid to open the door. So, I said a quick prayer and made a dash for the door.

As you can see because I'm writing this, no sudden bolt of lightning shot out of the sky and struck me dead on the spot. But, that doesn't mean I'm going to fearlessly walk in from my car the next time a storm happens.

Somehow I think this will end up in a story somewhere.

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