Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance. –Jude 1:2
This morning I fought the many-headed beast that is traffic as I made my way to school. It started out in Lees Summit on highway 350. Traffic bunched up for no apparent reason. It opened up again as soon as we passed a roadside sign that read “Accident Reduction Zone. Laws strictly enforced.” When another of those signs appeared, traffic again ground to stop and go speed. It seems that these warning signs were more likely to cause accidents that prevent them.
When I made my way onto I-435, I expected the congestion to clear up, but instead found going slow across the entire south side of Kansas City. Finally, as I approached the college, I discovered the source of the problem. A black van sat on the side of the road, well off onto the shoulder, with a police car and a motorist assist truck flashing their lights behind it. Although all three vehicles were well off the right-most lane, everyone had to slow down to take a look at nothing, turning a ten-minute drive into a thirty-minute one.
That’s what put me into a crummy mood this morning. How stupid am I? Despite all the marvelous things, temporal and spiritual, I can still claim in my life, I let a delay in getting to school foul my morning. What foolishness!
I believe that Jude intended this verse as a blessing, a wish. “May you have mercy, peace, and love,” but we could read it as a statement of fact. We have received mercy. We have peace with God. And God so loved the world, including me. With that sort of abundance, why do we so often allow our attitudes to be blown about by the shifting winds of fortune–or traffic.