Wyoming has a lot to offer. It is home to the Grand Tetons and to the first national park––Yellowstone. It has unique and intriguing rock formations like Devils Tower and Heart Mountain. And its state motto is “Equal Rights” as it was the first state to grant the right to vote to women in 1869. Of course, the State Symbols USA website claims they allowed women to vote so that they would have enough “voting citizens to meet the population requirement for statehood.” Though this might seem a bit more self-serving than altruistic, I can see the wisdom in it as the latest census reports Wyoming having the smallest population of all the US states.
Wyoming is also one the few states that has an 80mph speed limit, which is a wonderful perk when you have miles and miles and hours and hours of the exact same scenery to look at, which is basically lots of brown grassland. This landscape is dotted with disconnected fences along the freeway, almost always always on just one side of the road. To the ignorant these bits of fences would seem laughable for what animals would be deterred by 25 yards of fence followed by a ten yard gap? But to those in the know, these fences are not to keep animals out but to keep snow off the highway––which means there’s a lot of snow and it comes in sideways!
What struck me most was that after more than 20 years, the I-80 section in Wyoming was STILL under construction! It was under construction the last time I drove through Wyoming. But then I realized that with the harsh winters Wyoming experiences, the roads must be maintained and repaired annually in order to keep them in good condition and provide a smooth and safe ride for travelers.
Wyoming’s roadworks, just like the roadworks I can see in every other state, reminds me that God too conducts “annual” maintenance on us. We often experience harsh winters and searing summers in our lives, which can take a toll on us spiritually, emotionally, and physically. Our faith can be shaken; our nerves, frayed; and our bodies, weakened. Sometimes that maintenance is filling in some holes and sometimes it requires a redirection of the road, but in His mercy and grace, God lovingly takes the time to care for each one of us––every day, every month, every year.