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TOO Much Fun!
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It was five o’clock on a Monday morning and well below freezing. I was fifteen and on my way to the high school gym to lift weights and run before school started. It was wrestling season and the leaner and meaner you were, the more likely you were to be the one pummeling instead of getting pummeled. It was that fact and that fact alone that propelled my brother and I out of bed, into clothes, and into our parents station wagon to collect our friends and hit the gym. Our first stop was at my friend Jason and Corey’s house. And from there it was on to get Tobias and Shawn. Most mornings we were a right surly bunch, full of teenage angst and a particular distaste for anything that resembled a chipper spirit. But for some reason, this morning was different.


After Jason and Corey climbed in and mumbled their hellos with heavy lidded eyes, we drove on to get the rest of the bunch. Tobias and Shawn did not immediately come out even after my brother gingerly tapped the horn. We all agreed that they should not have the luxury of arising at a decent hour, and my brother was selected to go in and wake them up. Before he got out of the driver’s seat, knowing his younger brother all too well, he said “no driving the car.”

No sooner had he rung the doorbell then he turned and saw the red taillights of the station wagon racing out of the driveway. Corey and Jason were now wide awake and hooting their praise for my rebel bravado. I felt like a million bucks. We went screaming on the dirt roads that made up all roads in my small hometown. Then, there was a turn. Turning on a dirt road while doing sixty, driving underage, amped on adrenaline and with passengers is not something I’ll ever recommend to anyone. We got airborne as the car left the road in favor of the ditch. The car slammed down, dust consumed our world, and we quickly realized that we were still all screaming.

My brother, Tobias and Shawn eventually showed up, and all six of us were somehow able to get the car back onto the road with only a broken hubcap to show for it. My parents eventually got wind of what happened, although I cannot remember much of a punishment. But this memory drives home something rather poignant in its allegorical nature.

So many times I have thought that something might be fun, harmless and exciting. And maybe it was something that originally was all three of those things. But so quickly I can become consumed with whatever it is that seemed like such a good idea. All of us can become obsessed with something that may seem harmless, but quickly leads us into a ditch. I hope I never forget how easy it is to lose control and become distracted from what is most important: friends, family and the Creator who will keep us in the middle of the road if we but let Him.

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By Garrett Gladden. Copyright © 2007 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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