YIELDING WITH THE AMISH

DSC_0952The Amish way of life has always fascinated me. Truthfully, I’ve held a longstanding wish to spend a few months living among the plain and simple–experiencing life as they live it. I’ve read my fair share of Amish novels, watched Amish movies, and researched Amish life. You can imagine my joy and anticipation having arrived in Lancaster County–the heart of Amish life in Pennsylvania. Elation would not be too strong a word to describe my mood.

DSC_0977We pulled off the turnpike and made our way to an arterial road we thought would lead to the huge barns we had glimpsed from the interstate. I was thrumming with excitement, all smiles and girlish anticipation. My head bobbed from right to left like a tennis match spectator. Anticipation was building. Then suddenly…

We were nose-deep inside a historic stone underpass. It was awesome but it was also two feet shorter than the height of our RV. With six cars lined up behind us and no where to pull over we had to stop traffic and choreograph a retreat maneuver or lose the top of our traveling home.

You can imagine the strain on our extra strength antiperspirant. We offered pentitent smiles and timid waves as we backed our big old tourist-mobile out of the tunnel and made a sharp left turn.

DSC_0865Crisis averted we continued in search of barns, buggies and brilliant gardens. Soon we found ourselves lumbering down ribboned lanes in the heart of Lancaster County. Hope renewed, we pressed on.

DSC_0925DSC_0972But as with our journey east, I was again experiencing my highly anticipated Amish excursion through bug carnage and a bouncing camera lens. My dear husband did his best to maneuver our 25 foot motor home down narrow lanes shared by horse-drawn buggies and motor cars. But as before there was no place to pull over. To frustrate matters more, we only had a vague idea where we were headed.

DSC_0850I had opened the large windows on both sides of our coach so I could hang out like a ravenous member of the paparazzi. My husband called from behind the wheel, “Incoming: Huge barn on the right!” I would scurry to the right, hang my upper body out the window and fumble with camera dials. Click. Click. Click. Then abruptly, “Buggy on the left! Repeat: Buggy on the left!” I was jumping around the RV like a three-year old mainlining corn syrup.  Behind us a line of motorists was growing right along with my husband’s neck veins and my urge to cry. (Keep in mind we were in day 7 of confined quarters and gizzard jostling RV TRAVEL.)

To frame my frustration, let me tell you about Gettysburg earlier that morning.DSC_0731We had our youngest son with us, whom we journeyed to Pennsylvania to visit. We arrived at the historic site and opted for a walking tour of the grounds. We were 20 minutes into our journey when I suddenly needed to find a restroom (because I have been putting off bladder surgery for four years). My need was urgent! I kept walking certain I’D find A potty stop along the way.

As we moved further into the park my hope of finding a relief station greatly diminished. Urgency dictated I head back to the visitor center while the two of them continued. We agreed to meet back at the RV.

I made my way back to the visitor center concentrating heavily on two things: 1) Not wetting myself and 2) Keeping my tears at bay. I successfully avoided both 1 & 2. While I waited in the parking for them to return.DSC_0722Meanwhile, back in Lancaster I managed to eek out a vapor of genuine gratitude for the privilege of seeing what I was seeing.

But then I found myself mentally listing all the disappointments I had accumulated since mile marker 32 back in Montana. And then, as with our RV and that little stone tunnel, I had to slam on the breaks and back out.

I had to set aside my camera and lay down my agenda.

I realized the frustration came in when I was unsuccessful at digitally capturing my experience. (It’s not like I was on a production grew for the public television network or anything.)

Like the little black buggies I was so keen on capturing, I had to yield–they to the traffic and me to the trajectory of life.

This trip so far has been one giant object lesson in acceptance, in yielding. It’s as if God was wearing a tee shirt that read: YES, this is a teaching moment! I began noticing the YEILD signs along the roads. The letters became an acronym.

Yes to joy, yes to gratitude, yes to interruption

Even

If

Life

Derails

Somewhere in my rumination I concluded that Abba was saying to my heart, I want you to seek me with as much enthusiasm as you have sought out the scenery. Focus on Me and the journey I have laid out before you. Your nature is to strive but I want you to yield.

Yield to what you perceive as best so you can receive what is best. 

DSC_1017

Tomorrow we do Philly and I have to tell you, I’m feeling some reluctance. I’m picturing parking nightmares and we two travel novices making a bumbling attempt to maneuver the city of Brotherly Love.

Stay tuned!

3 thoughts on “YIELDING WITH THE AMISH

  1. I don’t mean to be a crazy fan, but I adore your writing. I was howling with laughter as you described the scenes, and nodding my head in agreement as you related the lesson of yielding versus striving. Keep writing Sherrie. We need it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You just made me cry, Girl!!!! Thank you for saying that…I’m such a second-guesser. I can only write what I live. Thank you, sweet Sister Friend for the encouragement! xo

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  2. “I want you to seek me with as much enthusiasm as you have sought out the scenery.” That hit me right where it hurts. I could substitute the word “scenery” with so many others. In my enthusiasm for “the things of this world,” I forget sometimes how beautiful Jesus is to look at and spend time with. Thanks for the reminder.

    Like

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