How to Avoid Potholes in Life

A military mom learns to steer her way around life’s obstacles, not toward them.

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Posted in , Aug 31, 2017

How to avoid potholes in life

Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. (Colossians 3:2, ESV)

It’s been many years since my daddy taught me how to drive, but I still remember many of his tips. I struggled with avoiding obstacles in the road. No, not big ones like other cars or pedestrians. But I had a penchant for hitting every pothole or piece of debris that landed in my lane. 

Daddy would sit beside me, doing his best to keep his voice level. No matter how much he encouraged me to “steer left, steer left, STEER LEFT!” I still honed in on the obstacle in front of me every single time. The collateral damage wasn’t insignificant—wear and tear on the car and on my poor father’s nerves.

Finally, he zeroed in on my problem: I was focusing on the obstacle, not the path around the obstacle. Once I understood that, I was able to avoid them every time.

While our son was in the military I discovered how that little trick works in life as well. When he first enlisted, I found myself only focused on the issues and fears that cropped up while he was deployed.

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And when I focused only on problems, they loomed larger and larger until I felt totally overwhelmed. Then I learned to focus on God, acknowledging that He was my only clear path around the emotional debris that littered this new life as the mother of a Marine.

By simply changing my focus, I was able to avoid the potholes that came with being a military mom and minimize the upheaval to my life and the lives of those around me. What are you paying attention to today?

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