Bridges are more than simply a structure. They have spirit. Some bridges even sing if the wind is right. If you’re walking on a bridge you might even feel it dance as the traffic passes over. A good bridge is functional art with graceful lines and imposing strengths. But above all, a bridge is a symbol of transition.
When we think of concepts like destiny we’re tempted to envision a road that starts at birth and delivers us to our ultimate fate. But life isn’t simply a line from birth to death and beyond. It’s a network of decisions that change our course and in doing so change our destiny. I can’t begin to even ponder the number of times when I looked down only to see that my fuel was low. I stop at the station and get delayed by a line of cars at the pump. Then a few miles down the road I come up on a wreck and realize that the delay at pump prevented my involvement in the wreck. It was my choices that expended the fuel that caused me to stop and be delayed. It wasn’t my foreknowledge of a wreck that made me stop but my circumstances that effectively changed my destiny for the day. Other choices are more consciously made. Suppose for a moment that I struck up a conversation with the person at the pump across from me and they had just come from the direction where I was heading and told me of a diesel fuel spill on the road. And that the fuel spill made the road so slick that they had almost wrecked themselves. Now I have a reason to choose an alternate path and change my destiny. So I need a bridge. A bridge that delivers me from one destiny to a better one. I need a point of transition.
Sometimes we are fortunate enough to be warned of hazardous conditions ahead. But if we think that there’s no way to avoid it or we fear that transitional bridge because it shakes then we have created our own fate.
The concept of destiny and the concept of fate might seem the same on the surface but they are in fact two very different things. Fate is uncontrollable. Mankind is mortal. Our fate is to one day leave our body behind and enter into eternity. Destiny is malleable. How we spend that eternity is up to us and our willingness to use the bridge that changes our destiny.
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