Leave the Driving to God

            I admit it.  I’m a worrier.  My dad used to lecture me and tell me not to worry about things I couldn’t do anything about.  “Don’t sweat the small stuff,” he’d say.  He often reminded me about his calm and collected boss, who found himself doubled over with ulcers at 21 and decided he needed to quit worrying.  I’d argue back that what’s little to one person isn’t to another.  Besides, how would I know I couldn’t do anything about something unless I tried.  I know now that there is merit to Dad’s advice.   I have to step back often to put things in perspective.  Little things can be worked out or left alone.  Things that are beyond the scope of my abilities have to be let go of, or I must seek help.

            I hate hearing or reading sermons that say things like, “Your worry is an insult to God.”  I want to shout, “Don’t you think I know that already?”  I’ve heard many times that worry is unbelief, even sin, and God isn’t honored or glorified by that.  The well intended messages are an insult to me!  Serious problems need to be dealt with and shouldn’t be ignored or denied.  My wife thinks I worry too much, and I think she doesn’t worry enough.  I guess that’s one way we balance out each other.

            Recently I read a book by a well known pastor, which dealt with several aspects of living a more Christ-like life.  I was particularly blessed by the chapter on prayer, which started out by tackling the problem of worry.  I liked his attitude.  He didn’t lecture condescendingly or negatively.  He acknowledged that there are problems, and God doesn’t want us to overlook them.  His emphasis was that there is an alternative to worrying, and it’s a better way to handle things.  I like it when somebody puts it to me in those terms.  I can understand that.  Who doesn’t want to take the better way?  Of course, that better way is to trust the Lord and to pray.  Turning something over to God can be the hard part though.  The author/pastor encouraged readers to admit to God when it’s tough to trust Him.  He wants us to talk to Him and bear our hearts to Him.  This is something I can do.

            Then a thought came to me, and I’m not sure what brought it about.  It’s an illustration from my own life.  I need to trust God just as I trust a friend when I’m riding along with him.  Let me explain.  G. has been very kind to give me a ride to such things as doctor appointments.  He’s admittedly not good with directions, especially when going to unfamiliar places, and I’m a poor navigator.  When we’re conversing, who knows where we’ll end up?  He gives me credit for getting us back on the right road though, like the time we were on a trip, and I pointed out we weren’t going the right direction according to the sun’s position.  We get where we’re going, though we may take the proverbial scenic rout.  When we’re on an out-of-the-way jaunt, there’s nothing I can do but ride along.  We’ll reach our destination one way or another, sooner or later.  I’ve learned not to let this upset me.  In life God wants me to leave the driving to Him.

            “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”  (Phil. 4:6-7).  “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” (Isa. 26:3).  “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct they paths.” (Prov. 3:5-6).

Explore posts in the same categories: Christian Life, Thoughts from John

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