Sunday, January 18, 2009

My Metaphor

The Pink Chair
A Lesson Learned
-draft 3
In May of 2006, my family made a trip to Fredericksburg by way of Hico on Highway 281. My parents were pulling their Airstream and following directly behind them drove my brother pulling his Airstream. On this trip I found myself riding shotgun with my brother.
Sidestepping a bit…just a few years earlier I had “saved” two old-fashioned chairs at a local dump. The backs and seats had been painted what had once been vibrant red. The arm and leg tubing had been painted what had once been the purest of white. However, when the chairs came to live with me, peacefully resting on my front porch, the paint had shown years of wear and tear. Holes had worn their way through the arm and leg tubing. Then and there I developed an attraction to those old fashioned porch chairs. It was then I kept a constant look out for more.
Back to the trip…having driven through the town square our truck began increasing speed in order to catch up with my daddy’s “gotta get there” foot. Our delay began when I spied, with my little eye, a clump of twisted color. Just in front of a large Victorian home lie two metal chairs.
After just a bit of begging, and a couple of blocks further out of Hico, my wonderful brother gracefully turned around (truck, trailer, tolerance and all). At this date in our lives, he was just about out of tolerance where I was concerned.
Driving back upon the clump of twisted color, we discovered that one of the chairs was beyond repair. It much resembled a car at the scrap yard. But, the one with a pink back and seat and pink tubing appeared to be salvageable.
Have I mentioned how great my brother was that day? It only took a slight presentation, with lots of gesturing, on my part to convince him of the ease with which that chair would travel in the back of the truck during our trip and just how I could resurrect its original attractive and useful characteristics.
The chair had a fine time during our family trip. It had been rescued from the gutter. I had a new chair. My family finally quit calling it trash and batting doubtful eyes its direction. The all too familiar shadow of, “Sure, Hattie. You are always ‘gonna’ - something,” cast its ugly little self over the family’s faces.
My now cherished pink chair, as I understand, was created by a fine craftsman years ago. He used the best of materials and followed a plan sketched out years before.
Just before the chair was purchased and moved to a home with a family, the craftsman took time to step back to admire his handy work and he was pleased that people sought him out for the simplistic sturdiness his craftsmanship gave them.

Life happened.

Rusted, chipped, and having been repainted many times to imitate its first luster, the chair lay in the gutter. Its original use, beauty, and characteristics were now gone.
No human power could straighten the bent form back into the straight angle that had once been appealing to the family who purchased it. The pink paint, though bumpy and chipped, was socially tolerable.
It could still be of use. It just had to have the right place to be for acceptance. The chair’s creator had made it to be of use for others. For a while, it was found to be so.
But then, some things have to be in absolute perfect condition to be acceptable on most of life’s porches.
Through all of the imperfections the chair still has a use, at least to one. It is still helpful, at least to one. It is still important, at least to one. It is still has strengths, at least to one.
The pink chair is now my God chair. I sit there when I want to spend time listening, awash in contentment with peace.


  1. " “Sure, Hattie. You are always ‘gonna’ - something,” "
    You must have been a "resolute" optimist or a "stubborn" gal in the family....:-)))
    Never mind, at least you have saved one and done something you believe it is correct. Small things merit too.

    Look forward to your next pondering

  2. happens to us....we get burnt, run over, rundown, etc...the pretty "chair" soons looks a bit used...few more years...more life... beauty and usefulness not noticable..but God sees the use still in that chair (us)..He doesn't look at the outward appearance like man does...the chair (us) is still beautiful to Him...It also takes someone that appreciates true beauty to notice the chair..

    I get it Hattie! I think!! That is what it spoke to me.