Riding Lessons

Creative Commons Arturo Sotillo
It happened yet again in that parent moment yesterday, as I tried for the first time to teach Little A to ride a two-wheeler.  Helmet? Check.  Brand-new Huffy?  Check.  Willpower?  Healthy dose of fear?  Check and check.

You see, we hadn’t intended on skipping the training wheels stage, but it just happened that way.  I bought training wheels when I bought the bike with every intention and effort to install them, and after an hour or so on the sidewalk with two of my neighbors and the bike in various stages of disassembly, we concluded that no, this was not the kind of bike that accepted training wheels. I knew in my head, though, that Little A could do this.  She could touch the ground while on the seat and that was all I was asking for.  It would take some work, but I knew she could do it.
Then came the coercion, forcing, prompting portion of our day, finally ending in, “We’re going to the park whether you like it or not.”  Me thinking, We’re getting this thing done.
So, we loaded up and at the peak of toasty Georgia day and we started practicing. 
I’m not going lie to you, there was a lot of tears. 
Little A cried too.
Pedal, pedal, push, push.  Became our mantra.  I felt like a combo riding coach/midwife.
I found myself crouching down, towards the beginning of our lessons, getting eyeball to eyeball, saying to her after a lot of body-shaking tear-filled gasps, “I know this is really hard, but Mom wouldn’t have put you on this bike if I didn’t think you could do it.” 
It was that very phrase that hit me in the gut.  You know those phrases, the words that seep out of our lips that we know our Heavenly Father have been saying to us for some time now. 
I wouldn’t have asked you to do this if I didn’t think you could handle it. 
More than running after my daughter, hand on the back of her seat, coaching encouraging, coaxing, it was that phrase that left me breathless.
And then came that moment, that beautiful moment, after about 10-15 minutes or so, when we are speeding through the park grass (it’s just safer that way–I’m not completely insane).  Repeating Pedal, Pedal, Push, Push, she’s got the speed up, bike pointed towards minimal imminent threat and I just let go. And she is one her own, pedaling and pushing, narrowly avoiding the trees and my heart soars and I do a little victory dance inside as I run to congratulate her. 
Remember the moment of Jesus inviting Peter out on the water?  Jesus simply said was “Come” and he did and that was all it took.  No fancy promises, 3-point sermons or motivational speeches, just “Come.”
Has He been speaking to you in the same way lately?  How will you respond?

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