My windshield looks like a war zone.
Every year at this time, love bugs, or honeymoon flies, swarm all over Florida. Although small, these bugs manage to make a nuisance of themselves because they mate and drift together for days on end. Slamming into the front ends of cars and windshields, being inhaled through nose and mouth alike, finding crevices to creep into houses.
Twice a year they cover our sunshine state with their very low-key, non-threatening presence. They don’t sting or cause welts or hurt people in any obvious way.
The myth had circulated that they were the product of some mastermind at the University of Florida, a genetic experiment that went awry. An attempt to lessen another one of our favorite Florida bugs, the mosquito.
Not so much.
They migrated here from Central America and have made a good portion of the south their home.
Nobody invited them.
The problem with the critters is they accumulate so quickly. Driving to and from work is enough to have your front bumper and windshield covered with dead bodies.
I enjoy driving in silence. It’s a discipline I’ve developed over the years, so when I start the car, I don’t automatically turn the radio on. The quiet gives me time to think about my day and breathe.
Not during this time.
The sound of bodies splatting on the windshield is similar to tiny pellets hitting a surface. Accompanied by the spray of body matter, the front window of a car can be obscured in a very brief amount of time.
This presents a conundrum. When I look through my windshield, I can choose to focus on the road beyond the splatter. It’s where I’m going, and to arrive anywhere safely I need to be able to see what’s ahead of and beside me.
My temptation is to focus on the bug bodies. The splats come at regular intervals, creating a kaleidoscope of gross. The fascination with the bugs fades the view of the road to a blur.
Not a safe way to drive a car.
So many things splat against the windshield of my life, confusing the way ahead, keeping me from focusing on where I need to go. My job is people, and being an inveterate people pleaser, I can easily focus on being who they need me to be instead of accomplishing what I need to do. Being responsible, I tend to say yes too often, and when my schedule gets too crazy, I lose sight of my destination.
Focusing on things I have no control over and allowing them to determine my response can only end in frustration. Life is full of the unexpected; I can only deal with what’s before me.
What I can see clearly is that God alone sees beyond my today. He knows all my days– every one of them was known by Him before I was ever born. He understands me fully and gives me the freedom to choose my path. With His love and truth, I don’t have to fear what I don’t know or can’t control.
My windshield is less messy that way.