Let’s fix that

By Helen Guilford

I grew up in the era when everything that came across one’s life had more than one use – from the paper that wrapped purchases at the neighborhood “grocery” store to the products purchased, even to include the string that secured the package. If the string was not needed immediately it would be soon, so it was rolled onto the string ball.

Throw something away just because it was broken? Oh! Not for the first break. Surely, someone could fix it – maybe even after the second or third break – or more!

Mom often told of my brother next older than me wanting a bike. He asked if he could “turn my trike into a bike”. Mom’s response was that he probably could but then he wouldn’t be able to ride it.

The rest of that story? A little boy possibly six years old went tearing past the kitchen window where Mom sat to clean vegetables from the garden. As he sailed by, he called out, “I turned my trike into a bike and I can RIDE it!” Just another sign of the times when we were growing up.

Was an auto mechanic needed? Holler at Dad or even an older brother. They were good “shade-tree” mechanics out of necessity. With the carry-over of that growing up mentality I still seek a home-spun fix when something fails to perform like I expect it to.

I was driving the other day and discovered my cruise control didn’t work. No matter what I did, I couldn’t get it to set and hold. Now, to me, that is a major illness for a car. I still do quite a bit of distance driving and truly depend on that cruise control. In fact, I even use in local driving so I was upset about its new quirk of failing to maintain and resume my given speed.

At the time I discovered this problem, I was driving locally but had several miles ahead of me. I went through all the right motions of setting it – select my chosen speed and push the “set” button. Only, the next time I looked at the speedometer, I was seriously exceeding not only my own limitations but the those of the State of Ohio as well.

I tried again. Same result.

And again. No change.

By now I was getting concerned as there other long distance drives in my not-too-distant future. I would have to make an appointment with the dealer to get this fixed.

Could I possibly fix it myself like I used to fix everything?

My next time out, I tried. I went through the right steps, set the cruise to the desired and almost legal speed, and soon it was going faster. Try that again.

This time when I had it set to my specifications, I pulled my right (accelerator) foot away from the peddle. Voile! It worked! The selected speed maintained right where I wanted it. No creeping up or slowing down.

You see, I had not given full control to the cruise mechanism. My foot had continued to rest on the accelerator and override my mechanical selection.

So, did I fix it? In a manner of speaking, yes, I did. Having determined the problem, I try to keep a constant fix on it by keeping my foot from interfering with what the cruise control knows.

Not quite so easily fixed is the manner in which I give all my concerns over to God in prayer but then just keep on trying to take care of things myself. It’s the very same thing! God is ready, able and eager to deal with my problems, but I must take my foot off the accelerator and give Him a chance.

Just as He saved me without my “help” so He will lead me through every day if I just allow Him to have His way in my life. I must remember, “Helen, take your foot off the accelerator!”

By Helen Guilford