I ALMOST GREASED THREE BIKERS last week, while I drove my rented Jeep toward Milwaukee, home of the Harley Davidson Museum.
The bikers were still varooming far behind me when I started to shift over into the passing lane to get around a slow-moving truck.
Then, suddenly, they were about to splat into my rear window. I have a windshield wiper back there, but I’d hate to have to use it on them. Typically, I use the rear wiper to wave a thank-you to polite drivers who let me in front of them.
With the reflexes of a grandpa, I instantly swerved back into the slow lane, while the lead biker shot past me, shaking his head.
He’s lucky he still had a head.
The bikers had seen me start to pull out, and decided to get past me before I got a chance to slow them down.
Speed limit was 70 mph. I was running faster. They were running fastest. I’d guess somewhere around 85-95, as they got around me and quickly vanished from sight and sound.
We have a vocabulary for the road, don’t we?
It’s nothing to speak of, if you get my drift.
The Bible has a vocabulary for the road, too.
Bible road song
The Bible has 14 songs for travelers to sing on the road. They’re pilgrimage songs for folks headed to Jerusalem.
But I think some of them work for us today, too.
Jews might have sung this song while traveling with relatives. But it’s a good song to sing for those of you headed home to visit relatives. Especially relatives who want to talk about politics, sports, or the weight you’ve gained.
Wow, isn’t it good, isn’t it great
when the whole family gets along.
It’s like the smell of the woods in perfumed oil
poured on the head and dripping down into the beard.
Not just any beard. The beard of Aaron, the first high priest.
Fragrance engulfs him as the oil rolls down to the hem of his robe.
It’s like dew on Mount Hermon
covering the mountains of Israel.
Here on the mountain, God announces his blessing:
life that never ends.
Psalm 133:1-3 Casual English Bible
Think of it this way
I’m not sure how well those images translate.
Maybe the perfumed oil makes more sense when we remember that folks were singing this song during a long walk in a hot land at a time before deodorant.
And maybe we can appreciate the dew when we remember that Israel—especially around Jerusalem—is a dry land that doesn’t get much rain.
The songwriter is saying it’s great when family members get along.
I think he’s also saying if we could package that peace and harmony into a scent, it would smell like hotcakes and warm maple syrup in the morning, with bacon on the side.
And it would taste like a cup of cool water dipped from a mountain spring after a morning run—and before the invention of fracking.
“Those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.” —Jesus (John 4:14 NLT)