That Doesn’t Look Right to Me!

Have you ever noticed when things just seem wrong? Maybe it’s something that you’re not very knowledgeable about, but it still doesn’t ‘look right’ too you. Recently I noticed a transition ramp between two freeways. This ramp takes you from a lower freeway up to the freeway that is crossing over the first one. If you are local in So Cal, it’s the 605 S to the 91 W. This particular transition ramp is on top of a large berm of dirt to help it rise to the higher 91 freeway. However, the drop off is very steep, nearly vertical.

What’s weird about this whole thing is, there is a guardrail on the inside of the turn on the transition ramp, but not the outside of the turn. That just doesn’t seem right to me. I’m not an expert on such things, but I’ve never seen a car miss a turn because they turned too sharply. Generally they are going too fast and go off the outside edge of the turn. If it’s raining and slippery, the car isn’t going to slide off the inside of the turn (this transition ramp has nearly no banking), the car is going to slide off the outside of the turn, where there is no guardrail. It just doesn’t seem right to me.

I guess I’m supposed to trust Cal Trans and their experts that they know what they are doing and a guardrail is not need in that spot. But that’s kind of tough to do. Because right where this transition ramp joins the 91 freeway, I’ve only got a few car lengths to merge through 5 lanes of traffic to make it to the carpool lane. That monster merge turns out to be fairly challenging most days. If the people designing this couldn’t see that this arrangement was going to make those merges really hard and move the carpool entrance a few feet further down the freeway – how am I supposed to trust them that they know where a guardrail should be? You’ve got to be able to handle the small things (where the carpool entrance should be) before I’ll trust you with the big things (safety).

I’ve seen this same principle at work in spiritual matters. Someone reads a story about having strong faith and they want a deep faith like that too. So they attempt to trust God with something. Generally with something big and heavy. And if things don’t turn out just exactly like they wanted, their faith in God is shattered. But it was a fragile faith to begin with. Because it was not grounded in a lot of small things, but perched on top of one big thing. That just doesn’t seem right to me. A strong, dynamic faith is grounded in a ponderance of small, little things. That’s what makes it strong, many data points. Consider the example Jesus used to demonstrate faithfulness.
You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness! Matthew 25:21 (NIV)

How is your faith? Is it grounded in the little things? Or just balanced, precariously, on one big thing?

That’s worth pondering about.