July 6, 2016
Traveling many miles on interstate highways gives one lots of time to think. You miss the benefits of driving 20 miles per hour through communities where people live, work, go to school, play and attend church – that is an experience of its own. But the interstate lets you cover a lot of miles in less time.
I thought about the process of developing the wonderful highway that I cruised over so easily. Hills were cut – an amazing project of its own. Valleys were filled and curves eliminated. It took years to design and complete what I was privileged to travel. It is hard to comprehend how it all came about.
I know nothing about the engineers who figured out where the interstate should go. I never met any of the workers, some of whom may have risked their lives. And landowners had to make adjustments to allow for the space needed. I was not aware of any of this, but I benefit from their efforts.
It reminds me of the way my life is influenced and enhanced by the efforts of other people. In real ways, I am traveling a “highway” that was built by other people, and my journey is easier because of what they accomplished. They lowered some hills and filled some valleys, straightened out some curves and left an attractive landscape for me to enjoy.
Faces come into view as I ponder these thoughts. I see my parents and grandparents, teachers and mentors. My wife, children, grandchildren, co-workers and friends have all played a part. I see my church family – each person makes a difference. There are medical personnel and community and national leaders.
There are people like the interstate builders that I cannot picture – such as those who discovered certain medicines that make my life longer and healthier. Also firefighters and police officers who keep me safe when I do not even know I am in danger.
My list could go on, but this is enough to say that I want to be more mindful of and grateful for the efforts of others and not forget those special people.
Pastor Bill Ehmann