Last year we didn't get to do any family bike rides because we had a newborn and three kids now with a buggy that fits two. Noah didn't know how to ride his two wheeler yet, so we were stuck, and sad, and missing our family adventures on our bikes.
Two weeks ago my dad taught Noah how to ride his two wheeler and he is a stunt man on that thing already. I secretly got really excited knowing that adventures were coming our way this summer. I couldn't wait to get on my bike, put Noah on his and the other two in the buggy.
Yesterday the kids and I took a 5 mile bike ride together in the morning and after dinner after the kids were bathed and in their Jammie's, we broke the rules, because it was just so nice outside, and went for our first family bike ride in two years. You have to break the rules sometimes, and Noah has proved to be an AMAZING bike rider. It is so much fun! My heart was soaring as my dream of family bike rides were coming true. Caleb and Lu had a blast together in the buggy. It was fun to hear her instigate playfulness with Caleb. Music to my ears.
Minneapolis is known for its bike paths. It was actually claimed as the number one biking city last year. There are miles after miles after miles of bike paths. Even living in the city, within minutes, you are biking next to the Mississippi away from city noise. Its breathtaking riding bikes here, and we love it.
With this being our first time out on bikes with a child rider, we had to discuss some rules. We were riding in the street so I needed to be in between Noah and the cars driving. His safe zone was between the curb and me.
We called it the pocket.
I would call out, "Noah I need you in the pocket", and he would instantly slow down to ride next to me.
It was incredible to watch his awareness and comfortablity rise as he grew safer inside the pocket. He knew he was OK and that my job as his mother was to keep him safe. As the parent I was looking out for cars, other people, and I knew the way to go. At one point he even said, "Mom I like it in the pocket because you are here."
The pocket. The place where we are protected. Where we are safe. Where we are in the confines of a parent who loves us and is taking care of us. See Noah still had potholes and bumps in his path and there were still cars coming at him that he needed to look out for, but he felt different because he was in the pocket.
When Noah looks ahead of him, he only sees right in front of him. The stop sign, the turn, the tree, he only sees a couple feet around him. All of those things are very distracting and that is where his focus is.
Like Noah when I am looking in my life, I often only see my day or week ahead of me. I see the laundry, the dishes, the discipline, the teaching moments to my kids, the contracts to send out for speaking gigs, the gardening, the cooking, the bills, the etc, fill in the blank. I often times have blocked vision because I am human. I can only see what is right in front of me.
Like God, when I am the parent, I see the whole path. (only biking, not making any assumption that I have any clue about life or am powerful in any sort of way.) I can see over Noah's head to see if cars are coming. I know exactly where we are going and can direct him and help him along. I know when to help him slow down, when to stop, and when to go faster. I know when to move over and allow him more room, and I know when to snuggle up closer to him to offer my protection.
As the parent I am not taking the potholes and bumps out of his road. I am not controlling all the cars to keep them away from my kid. I am simply going along with him, loving him, talking with him, guiding him.
Living in the pocket. I started to really like that idea.
What would it look like to live in the pocket of faith with my life. Real life problems and issues would still exists, but that wouldn't be the focus. There would be peace knowing that I rested everyday in the goodness of God. There would be joy trusting God's presence in my life. Bad things would still happen, but sitting in the pocket would provide the right perspective.
It wouldn't be about the problem, because I would still have the Lord there to help me through. That's the perspective I want.
I want to live in the pocket.