Mr. Herman-ism #1 “Just follow the white line”

As Father’s Day approaches, I’d like to share some of the wisdom imparted to me by my dad, in hopes that it may bless you as it does me.


My father the late Herman P Jackson Sr. passed  away when I was only twelve years old. Although that is mighty young for a child to lose a parent, he left me well prepared for the future with his wise sayings. Let me tell you about one instance involving a white line.

My family and I were headed on vacation one summer when I was probably about eight or maybe nine years old; old enough to pay attention to what was going on around me. My father was driving and as we were moving along a terrible rain storm came up. The rain was so hard my parents could barely see beyond the nose of the car, or what vehicles were behind us. I remember my mother panicking and frantically asking my father to pull over. His response to her was profound in many ways and has helped me through many a tough situation (including a bad rain storm) in life. He said “Sugg, never pull over in a storm. I can’t see what’s on the side of the road and just like I can’t see, neither can other drivers. If I pull over, someone else may try to pull over, not be able to see us and hit us.” He went on to say, “Whenever you’re driving and you can’t see the road ahead of you, see that white line along the side of the road? Well, just follow the white line.”

As I grew older, for some reason, I never forgot that day, or what my dad said in the car in the midst of that terrible storm. I’ll never know if he, too, was afraid or if he was as calm as he appeared; I only know he used wisdom to keep us safe. The story doesn’t end there, God used those words about just following the white line to prove the immeasurable depth to that statement.

Once the storm lifted and a service station came into view where we could stop, my dad pulled over. As we got out of the car about five more vehicles pulled in behind us. Each of the men driving those cars got out and approached my father. The first gentleman to step forward extended his hand and thanked my dad for leading the way. You see each of those men were following us. Although, like us, they could barely see, they could make-out the tail lights from the car in front of them; unbeknownst to my father, they had formed a convoy and were following his lead.

There is a moral to this story. Sometimes in life we encounter storms, some worse than others. Many times in those storms we lose sight of our way, it’s at those times we need the wisdom of a guide. If you find yourself lost in the storm, remember there is always a white line along the side of the road. Don’t pull over, take a deep breath, blow off the spirit of fear and just follow the white line. You  never know you may find someone was following your lead.

Savannah J, she puts a little sass in every page.


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