What can’t you see?
As a detachment, I sometimes drive tractor and trailer as I find it relaxing, exciting and predominantly, just a lot of fun. There are many things to be aware of while I am rolling down the highway with 80,000 lbs. I am keeping my eyes on a dashboard full of gauges that are letting me know how the engine, transmission and differentials are performing and most importantly is anything getting too hot. I am paying attention to engine sound so I know when to sift up to a higher gear or down to a lower one. I am looking in my mirrors at the load I am carrying. Is it all intact or am I losing anything? If it is tarped load, is the tarp secure or beginning to flap in the wind? Is that horse and buggy going to go off the road a little bit so I don’t have to come to an almost complete stop and go through all the gears again? I didn’t think so. If I am pulling a flatbed and the load is tied down, are the straps tight or beginning to loosen anywhere? What is the little car going to do in front of me? If I am 13’6” are there any 12’ 6” underpasses on my route? Not a good time for a haircut! Is that guy really going to try and pull out in front of me? If it is a bulk load, is my tailgate secure and not leaking anything? There are fines for that! Do my tires sound normal? Does that guy really think I will be able to stop if he makes a sudden turn without signaling? When did the speed limit drop to 25 MPH? Is that a cop in that side road?
All the while I am trying to be fully aware of all of these things, one of the most important things to be aware of and look out for are the things that I cannot see. Many trailers have this little sign on the back saying, if you can’t see me in my mirror I can’t see you. Take my word for it, that is a true statement! If you can’t see me, you are in my blind spot! That means I can’t see you and if I can’t see you, I may do something that will cause us to come into contact with each other, which is always a dangerous scenario. As I am rolling down the highway there are many things I can see but it is the things I cannot see that have the most potential to become a major problem. How many times have we heard this statement said after a horrible accident. I just didn’t see him!! Blind spot!
Adjust the lens to look into our own lives, i.e. blind sports. What is it in my own life that I cannot see? What potential mishap, wound, fiasco or problem could be avoided if I could just give some attention or acknowledgement to what others are already seeing clearly but personally I am blind to. That’s is why it is so imperative that I have people I trust that are free to speak into my life. They can see what I cannot, bring into focus what is terrible fuzzy and put words to what I am oblivious to. My blind spots are completely clear to them. Just as it is imperative that I am fully aware of blind spots while driving I need to be fully aware I have blind spots in my personal life too.
Blind spots can manifest towards people I purposefully or innocently treat differently because I just cannot see them or unaware of how my actions will affect them. Usually my blind spots impact others in a negative way because I cannot see how my actions are impacting them. We are to be fountains of God’s mercy and grace, extending His love and grace through us to a lost a drying world around us. We are to give what has been freely given to us at no cost to us. We didn’t earn it, deserve it and certainly didn’t qualify for it, but Jesus extended it to us fully expecting us to extend it to others. It is acknowledging that I have received so much grace in my life that anything less than extending the same toward you would be a terrible thing.
Blind spots, I have them. That isn’t the question. The question is will I allow you to help me see them so that I can eradicate collateral damage to those around me?