Saturday mornings are busy. Andy and I travel to the village crossroads. He turns one way and takes the three younger girls to the indoor swimming pool. I turn in the opposite direction heading towards Imogen’s singing lesson.
Last Saturday, Andy rang me on my mobile just as Imogen’s singing lesson was finishing: “All done!”
“Me too. See you at home.”
I drove back through town, and just as I was about to approach the freeway, my phone rang.
“It’s Dad,” said Imogen glancing at the screen. “I’ll answer….Dad? Dad? ...  I can’t hear you…  All I can hear are crackles on the line, Mum.”
“Never mind. We’ll soon be home. Can’t be important.”
The phone rang again. Again Imogen answered it. Again she could hear only crackles. She hung up.
The phone rang again…more crackles.
The road from our village to the swimming pool is notorious for its poor phone signal so I decided that Andy was having trouble getting good reception.
The phone rang again. I pulled over and tried to ring Andy back. All I could hear were crackles. Was that a faint voice? I couldn’t decide.
Now I was beginning to feel worried. What could be so important that Andy would try time after time to reach me on my phone? Couldn’t he just wait a few minutes until we arrived home to talk to me?
The phone rang again. By now my heart was beating fast. My mouth was set in a firm line and I could feel the frown on my forehead. I was thinking about the road Andy was travelling along: the windy treacherous road, the road where only a couple of weeks ago there had been a horrendous accident. We’d heard the rescue helicopters going overhead, one Saturday evening. A 17 year old girl who’d had her licence for only two days had driven off the road into a tree. She was killed instantly. I do not know if her teenage passengers survived.
I was imagining…
Andy’s car crashed at the side of the road, our daughters injured, Andy furiously trying to get into contact with me.
The sweet faces of my girls filled my mind. What if I were to lose any of them? Pain gripped my heart as I continued my journey through the cutting towards home. Could I survive the death of a child? With God’s help, I have already done that once.  But to be honest, I never want to face such grief again.
Once we set our imaginations in motion, they are off and running.
The phone rang again. I ignored it. We weren’t far from home. Another couple of turns and then down to the bottom of the road… and there was Andy and the girls on the driveway. They’d just climbed out of the car, all of them perfectly fine.
Andy was smiling widely and pretending to direct traffic as he waved me into my parking spot. My heart relaxed. Relief spread through me.
“What was so important?” I asked.
“What do you mean?”
“You kept trying to phone me, call after call. We couldn’t hear what you were trying to say. We thought you’d had an accident.”
“I didn’t phone you. My mobile was in my bag in the boot of the car.” Andy reached into his bag to retrieve his phone and show me.
“Is it unlocked?”
“Your phone has been ringing me. All those crackles… we’ve been talking to the inside of your bag!”
“Whoops! Sorry!”
I think about imagined car crashes. Have I just got an overactive imagination? Am I a silly woman? Am I the only person we fears the worst?
So many unexpected things do happen in life. Every time we set out from home…  every time the phone rings… it could be bad news.
I think about love. The more I love, the more I will sorrow if anything happens to a member of my family. Is it dangerous to love too much?
I think of my husband and my children, and I can feel love physically overflowing from my heart. And what is that love? Is it God? Could it be that the more I love God, the more I love my family and friends?  So is it a risk to love too much? All I know is this: I love. I have no choice.
And if something does happen… “God whatever you allow, I will accept.” I know He loves me so much. I will survive with His help. I have before.
But I know, I know very well, it will hurt.
Please pray for those affected by grief.
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  1. You have written about my fear. Dermot does many hours of driving and I am sure I pray him home.
    Isn't it funny though the way it all turns out. The phone in Andys bag,and the girls and him olivious to your imaginings.

  2. Leanne, life is so uncertain, which we must accept, but we pray and try to leave it all in God's hands, although it can be difficult at times.

    The phone in the bag - after I'd recovered, I did think that was funny!

  3. Mobile phones are a great comfort when you use them to stay in touch, but they can be so worrying when you can't make contact, don't you think? I'm glad everyone was okay:)

  4. Hi Sue, you've touched on an area all of us parents can relate too~ the safety of our loved ones. I'm so happy it all turned out well for your family! God Bless.

  5. You're quite right, Vicky. When a phone is turned off or ignored or out of range, yes, I worry!

  6. Hi Noreen. We do to tend to worry about the safety of our loved ones. And usually everything is fine. But we all know people who are suffering the grief of an unexpected accident. And we think, "What if it was us?" God bless and thank you for your comment.

  7. Been there - done that. I worry too about my husband and children and often imagine the worst when I cannot reach them. God bless!

  8. Colleen, it comforts me to hear I'm not the only person who worries about their family. Perhaps I am not so silly after all! God bless

  9. Sue,
    Sometimes my imagination is my worst enemy! Rarely do the scenarios I work up in there happen. In other words, you are not alone :)

  10. Hi Mary. I love my imagination when I'm writing but when I'm worrying... Thanks for saying I'm not alone. God bless!

  11. Hi Auntie Sue.
    You must of had a bisy day.
    From Melanie xo xo

  12. Yes, Saturdays are busy Melanie! What about you? Do you go shopping and do all the jobs on Saturday mornings?

  13. I have had this happen to me too many times to talk. I love what you said: "I love. I have no choice. And if something does happen..'God whatever you allow, I will accept.' I know He loves me so much. I will survive with His help. I have before."

    It is getting to that line of thinking, that shift from fear to prayer, that is key, isn't it? Reading this, reminds me it is so important for me to nurture my faith, keep alive my heart for Jesus now so that the next time I am afraid, I don't wait a second before trusting in Him. As always, your writing is so to the point and I am so blessed by you and your blog! :)

  14. Hi Leslie. I'm so pleased you stopped to say hello. You are always so kind and bring joy to my day.

    You said - "it is so important for me to nurture my faith, keep alive my heart for Jesus now so that the next time I am afraid, I don't wait a second before trusting in Him."

    This is so very true! I think you have summed up everything well. I haven't got too much to deal with at the moment but it's a good time to pray and remain close to God, because no doubt I will have a great need to trust again in the future. God bless!


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