Mommy - Cheryle M. Touchton
The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. Psalm 9:9
“Traffic jams in the mountains usually mean something terrible has happened,” Mommy muttered as we sat there. We waited for over an hour as one by one, they turned each car around. I warned Mommy about everything passing us but she didn't seem to appreciate it.
“I have no idea how to get where I’m going,” Mommy told the man when it was her turn to turn around. Since Mommy usually tells people how to get to heaven, I knew she probably wasn’t talking about heaven.
“Where are you going?” he asked.
Mommy, I thought. That’s what you usually ask.
“The KOA Campground.”
“It sure is going to take you a lot longer to get there,” he said.
Mommy sighed. “It really will take a long time if I don’t how to do it. I don’t see but one way there on the map and I tried reprogramming the GPS with a roadblock but it just says route unavailable.”
The man rattled off a series of several highways, towns, and turns. I've traveled enough with Mommy to know she still didn't know how to get there. It sure would have been easier just to tell him how to get to heaven.
“Please say that again,” Mommy begged. The man looked hot and tired but he repeated it.
Mommy turned Hallelujah around and immediately called Daddy.
“Reroute Tom Tom using the roadblock feature,” Daddy suggested.
Mommy sighed again. “That was the first thing I tried. Tom Tom doesn't think it can be done. The worker seemed to think it could.”
“Where are you?” Daddy asked.
“I don’t know. Hang on.” I knew Daddy was sighing. Everyone is happier now that Tom Tom has a Where Am I? button.
When Mommy finally told Daddy where she was, he was quiet for a few minutes. “It sure is going to take you a lot longer to get there.”
“That’s what the man said. I know the first two turns but remember nothing after that.”
“What are the turns he told you about?”
“I've already made them.”
“But what where they?”
“Bob!” Mommy said. “Breathe. I can hear your blood pressure rising through the phone. I’m safe.” She told him what the worker said.
“OK,” Daddy said. “I see what he’s doing. Here’s what you do.” He repeated the instructions a couple of times. Mommy kept getting confused and suddenly lost cell coverage. Poor Daddy and Mommy.
“Shiloh, we’ve got to do this on our own,” Mommy said. No we weren’t. We had God. He would help Mommy remember. Besides, eventually Tom Tom would find us.
“This road sure is bumpy.” She didn’t have to tell me that! Mommy quietly concentrated on navigating the bumpy twisty roads, remembering what Daddy said, and avoiding colliding with the bumper-to-bumper frustrated drivers in both directions having the same problem.
“Oh no,” Mommy wailed. “The sign says rough road for the next 3.5 miles. How much rougher can it get?” I’m young but even I have learned not to ask that.
I thought about our first year together. It was like that bumpy road. We thought it was bad with all the twists and turns but along came a sign that said Rough Road Ahead and sure enough, the road got rougher.
When I first moved in, Mommy had been on a bumpy road. She was still sad about my older sister Belle and her Aunt Ka Ka dying. Mommy tried to train and play with me but it was hard to enjoy my puppy antics when she was so sad.
Just as she was getting better, the road got rough again when Granpap got sick. We rushed to Jacksonville to take care of him. Mommy went to the hospital and I spent most of my days in the laundry room. When Granpap got better, we went back to State College and I was happy because I had Mommy back.
Then Mommy got sick. She was in the hospital a week. This time, I was locked in the apartment bathroom during the day. When Mommy finally came home, she had to rest. I kept doing what puppies do and Mommy wasn’t very happy.
Finally, Mommy got better and we left for our first journey. I’ll admit I didn’t behave very well that first week but in my defense, Mommy’s rough road had caused my training to be bumpy.
We had enjoyed the first 10 days of the trip when suddenly the phone rang and there was another sign –Rough Road Ahead.” Grandpap had had a stroke. We were in Texas and made a mad dash for Jacksonville. Mommy went to the hospital and I went to the laundry room. In just three days, Granpap went to heaven. I stayed in the laundry room as Mommy and Uncle Vaughan made funeral arrangements and tried to take care of Ginny.
I wondered if our rough road would get smoother but it got rougher when Ginny was rushed to the hospital. Just 29 days after Granpap went to heaven, Ginny joined him there and I went back to the laundry room while Mommy and Uncle Vaughan made more funeral arrangements.
Mommy was sad a long time. She leaned on God and gradually got better. She started training and playing with me again. I got to meet a Mommy who wasn’t having to concentrate so hard on navigating bumpy roads. This Mommy was fun and I wanted to learn from her. I got excited when I realized what an important job I had – I got to tell people about Jesus. We were both excited when we led the first person to Jesus together.
But back to the rough road in New York. We arrived safely and Mommy finally got to call Daddy. His directions had saved the day but you and I both know that it was nothing short of a miracle that Mommy found her way through dozens of mountain roads without Daddy or a GPS.
Since we left home 6 days ago, Mommy and I have led 5 people to Jesus together and talked to many more. I’m not perfect – I still get too excited about birds and Mommy doesn’t like it that I can get out of every restraint she puts on me but at least I’m listening to her. We’re a team! Mommy says all Christians are a team too and everyone needs to do their part proclaiming what the Bible says about salvation.
We found out later that like Mommy suspected, a terrible accident had caused our roadblock. I sure hope someone had told the people who died in that accident about Jesus. Their rough road either ended forever because there are no more tears in heaven or the road just became unbearably horrible.
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