Posted by: Diane | July 26, 2011

Consequential Tail Swings

Yesterday, I started training to be a school bus driver.  I’m not sure where God is taking me with regards to bringing in an income this fall but bus driving is definitely an option. I am going to continue exploring different directions and possibilities but to be honest, other than poor pay, this bus driving deal isn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.

This morning, my trainer told me I was ready to “drive that bus.” I told him that it reminded me of the a day twenty eight years ago, when I gave birth to my first born and the hospital told me it was time to take my daughter home.  The conversation went something like this:

Nurse:  “Well, Diane..looks like you are getting the hang of mothering a new baby.  I think you can take your baby home today.”

Diane:  “Oh, I don’t think so…I’d like to stay a while longer, if you don’t mind. Can I rent a room here for a month?  I really don’t feel like I’m ready  to do all this alone yet.” 

Nurse:  “No, Diane… you”ll be OK.  It’s time to go home.” 

That’s EXACTLY how I felt when I sat in the driver’s seat for the first time, looked behind me and realized just how long that bus really was!  I definitely didn’t feel ready but the trainer knew I was a teacher by profession so he tried to encourage me by saying, “ It’s just like controlling two full classrooms of students… only it’s in a bus.”  

You gotta give him points for trying.

I learned a very interesting object lesson this morning when my trainer starting teaching me about using the mirrors properly while driving the bus.

“Diane, look in the mirror. You will notice that when you make a right turn, the back end of the bus swings to the left… and you have to make sure that you make room for this. There is always a consequential tail swing when you make a turn.  The size of the swing depends on the degree of the turn.”

Isnt’ that the truth in life too?  Parents tell their children that there are always consequences to their actions. Bus driver trainers explain that there is always a “tail swing” at the back, in reaction to turning the bus at the front.   Scientists say, “To every action, there is always an equal and opposite reaction.”  In Galatians 6.7, Paul says, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.”  

Let’s face it – some actions/choices in life cause really BIG tail swings. The Bible makes it clear that “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and  purify us from all unrighteousness” ( 1 John 1.9) but it’s important to consider the reality that forgiven sin can still sow terrible consequences.

This morning, I was reminded  that it’s wise to take a good look in the mirror and consider what kind of tail swing is about to happen because of the choices that I make when I’m in the driver’s seat.


  1. Great analogies, Diane. Makes one stop and really ponder.

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