We have all been there, stuck in traffic, lined up behind countless cars waiting for the traffic light to change from red to green. Or late for an appointment and praying that every traffic light that we encounter changes magically to green just as we approach it. My favorite is racing to catch the green light just as it is about to turn red, then feeling like a champion when I make it.
Summer in NYC the weather is crazy, bright blue skies and hot one minute then suddenly the sky darkens and open up to a downpour. I was walking home one day looking up I saw a traffic light, dark sky and impending rain as its back drop. God reminded me in that moment how important traffic lights are not just to control traffic (without them there would be chaos) but how they create rhythm for that traffic and can do the same in my life too.
Right now I feel like I am late for an appointment, my life is waiting and I am really really behind schedule. There is a job I need to get, a business I need to grow, a daughter to take care of and I am way late. I wake up every morning and feel like I am playing catch up. I hit the road running and do all the things. Hoping that something will happen. Hoping the lights will be magically green so I can get to where I need to go NOW.
What I am being reminded of each day when I don’t get a response to a job application or I feel like I am spinning my wheels is that none of it is in my control. The timing of the lights exists but it is impossible for me to know what that timing is.
Trying to beat the light may sometimes result in success and momentary satisfaction but more often it is an exercise in frustration.
Today I am going to just drive. Get up, get in my car and go. Decide to move with the flow of traffic, maintain a consistent speed and enjoy the sights along the way.
Today I will not try to rush, not try to maneuver to avoid traffic, showing up at my destination but not remembering for the life of me how I got there.
Today I will breathe and lay off my horn. Let a car pass, yield to those around me.
Today I will just enjoy the ride and embrace every red traffic light, look around and smile.