Thursday, November 10, 2011

Off Road

My daughter got a new car. Well, not new but used and not a car, a mini-van. But nevertheless, a first vehicle for her, and she was excited. Like all new toys are played with more – she drove that van, just for the joy of playing with her new toy. I was concerned.

Although I told her all the stuff Dad’s tell daughters about car maintenance. I’m not sure it took. I told her every mile driven is a mile closer to a break down, because stuff wears out. I know it sounds negative. But it’s true. In this world things get old. I know it more every day I look in the mirror.

So I started to write a letter. I wanted to show the wisdom in planning her trips. I had already asked her to diary her days, to journal her journey. I hoped this would be a way to log her travels and reveal any excess.

I also wanted to give a Bible example of how God miraculously kept stuff from wearing out. But even then each mile was directed by God himself.

I started out like this…

“Forty years walking the wilderness had to be hard on soles, and souls. Yet believe it or not – the shoes never wore. A miracle? Yes. But, they had to do their part. They didn’t move unless God said move. They parked when He said park. They drove when He said drive. Their GPS was a cloud by day and fire by night.”

Notice how my opening statement alludes to driving? But somehow I got off track. My GPS system detoured.

“Today our navigation is twofold, like the one of old. But written on paper to lead by day and written on heart to lead by night.”

I found myself writing about something unrelated to my daughters driving habits. We took an off-road detour, an uncharted path. If you rode along you’ll remember we bumped down a dusty road. And we got dirty and bloody. I saw things I had never seen before. Like; The Word on wood and blood in dirt. And the Bible is like a cloud by day for the easy stuff and The Word in our heart is like the fire by night for the hard stuff.

Maybe that’s His way. We start out with our good intentions to show someone else just how it is. And God happens. He takes us off road and shows us a thing or two.

I have a confession to make; the whole miracle thing bugged me anyway. Why did He make their stuff not wear out? I mean it was their own doggone fault for having to wander around out there anyway. Why not let them figure out how to get new shoes themselves? I probably would have - but not God. After all, I didn’t want my daughter to think: “Sweet! If I do everything God wants, and only go where He wants me to go, and stay where He wants me to stay – then my car won’t wear out.” But, maybe God doesn’t mind if she does.

Maybe He’s got other plans, maybe He doesn’t mind if she enjoys playing with the new toy she’s thankful for. And He knows some things can only be learned my living. The attitude of the heart is more important than knowing the dos and don'ts of life.

And maybe, if we let Jesus take the wheel we’ll find we’re in for the ride of our lives.



Megan Willome said...

I remember my dad having a similar talk with me. I've never learned to do a darn thing to my car. I have mechanics and a husband for that. But even in the bad times, there have been miracles.

Doug Spurling said...

Megan, well, what's a dad to do? Yet, even in hard times the Perfect Father bails us out with a miracle; even when we don't deserve it. What wonderous love. And he uses mechanics and husbands at times too. Thanks for stopping by.

S. Etole said...

Good thoughts for our journeys.

Doug Spurling said...

Thanks Sharon - honored to see one of your journeys brought you here. I Love your beautiful pictures.

caryjo said...

Smiled and chuckled. Very practically created.

Doug Spurling said...

Caryjo...your visit made me smile. Thank you.

Denise said...

Amen, very well said, you are a wise man, and a great dad.

Doug Spurling said...

Denise, thanks for your visit, I appreciate you.