Knowing and Doing Are Two Different Things…

Her name is Priscilla Hatcher. I tell you this because it seems we hear a similar story every two or three months and the names change but the details are the same.

She’s 15.
She lied to her parents as did 4 others about the plan/whereabouts for the evening.
There were 48 beers and some Smirnoff.
There was late-night/early morning rural road driving.
There was a wreck.
It took a couple of hours and jaws of life to get them out of the mangled truck.
There are three teens who lost their lives, one paralyzed, and Priscilla (who, thankfully, is expected to fully recover from a broken hip & arm).

There’s the obligatory inner questions that ran through my head. “What were they thinking?” “Didn’t they know better?” “Where were the parents in all this?”

They weren’t thinking. Teens’ll do that.
Yes…they knew better.
And the parents were involved. Her dad said he’d discussed these behaviors with his daughter on several occasions. Priscilla admitted that her dad had taught her well: “I knew right from wrong and I chose not to listen.”

She knew right from wrong.
She willingly chose wrong.

And it’s easy to cast judgment.

But, you know…

…we all have areas where we do the very same thing.

Some major. Some minor.

Some folks have an affair. Some drive while talking on a mobile phone.
Some folks explode in anger at others. Some let their dogs poop in others yards and walk away.
Some folks drink and drive. Some leave their car unlocked at night.
Some folks speed & ignore traffic rules in neighborhoods. Some don’t study for a test until that morning.
Some folks ignore their children. Some knock off early & leave their co-workers in a pinch.
Some folks cheat on their taxes. Some don’t return phone calls or e-mails.
Some folks steal from others. Some drive in the HOV lane with only one person in the car.
Some folks…

…well, I could go on and on. Just insert your own little couplet that I didn’t list that seems to satisfy your brain.

But at the end of the day, in most every case we know right from wrong. I mean, in very few cases do co-workers show up and proudly announce, “Hey, everbody. Guess what?! I just discovered Black Tar Heroin and oh baby is it awesome! In fact, I highly recommend you all run out and get some right now! I’ve got a guy who can get it for you!”

We choose not to listen.

And as the old adage goes…

We can choose our actions, but we cannot choose our consequences.
Or like the old proverb, that if you step one foot on a slippery path, you could lose control of the rest of your steps.

And I’m said that Priscilla lost a few of her steps. She’s only 15, man.
And I’m thankful that some of the steps I lost didn’t result in much more than bumps & bruises.
And I’m hoping that we’ll all use this little reminder to choose “right” today…

…in ways both big and small.