As I crossed the bridge to Saint Simons Island, I glanced at the mirror and saw a police car following me. I checked my speed, saw it was ok, and continued on. The next time I checked the mirror, the police car’s lights were flashing. I looked to see if I could move over and let him go around. Obviously, he was after someone and I was in his way.
When I figured out that he had several opportunities to go around but didn’t, I also figured out that I was the target of his lights! By that time, we were down the backside of the bridge so there was space to pull over – which I did.
Since I wasn’t speeding, I assumed there was a brake light out or something like that. I rolled down the window as he walked up and said good morning. He made a comment about my coming from Bulloch County (I guess he read the tag) and asked to see my driver’s license. After reviewing it, he made a couple more comments about Bulloch County and asked where I was headed. Then he took my license and went back to his patrol car.
He returned and said he pulled me over because I didn’t have my headlights on in the fog. I nodded my head and silently agreed it had been foggy earlier in the morning. I had my headlights on the entire 105 miles from Bulloch County until I stopped for a cup of coffee a couple of miles before the bridge. When I came out, the fog was pretty much gone so I left them off.
I also didn’t mention that I was among the majority crossing the bridge that didn’t have headlights on. He graciously gave me only a warning ticket and I graciously accepted it and headed on.
I wondered why he stopped me. I’m confident he was observant enough to see that only a few vehicles had their headlights on at that time. So, for some reason, he needed an excuse to pull me over. Maybe, considering his comments about Bulloch County, there was some connection with that. Or, it could be they were looking for a small red pickup truck. Perhaps he just thought I looked like I was doing something wrong. Another something I’ll never know.
Reflecting on the encounter, I see that my tongue could have gotten me in big trouble. An argument that pointed out all the other vehicles without headlights on might not have been taken well. Impatience could have caused problems, too. I doubt he would have been willing to go with a warning ticket to someone who began giving all the reasons he was in a hurry to go. So, I do thank the Holy Spirit for leading me in what to say and not say, and do and not do as a Christian. And, I’m thankful that I paid attention to Him (I wish I did that every time.)
“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man listens to advice.” Proverbs 12:15
Any wisdom is only by the grace of God – in spite of myself.