by Angela Royse Pelleman
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV). Sometimes it seems that nothing in our lives makes sense, and we often struggle with the question, “Why?” When we are struggling, the negative lies begin to circulate in our heads, as the devil tries to smother us with fear, anxiety, guilt, self-condemnation, and more. These spirits begin to suffocate us, making us feel hopeless. Believing the lie, that things are out of control, we desperately jump into the driver’s seat, grabbing at the wheel. This would surely cause an accident, if it occurred on the road, and most people wouldn’t even consider it. Yet, we do it all the time to God. We end up driving ourselves crazy!
It’s true that younger drivers may have a permit, but the law says they may only drive with a licensed adult who knows how to diligently watch the road ahead. The adult coaches the young driver to slow down and not follow the other cars too closely. An experienced licensed driver understands how easy it is to go over the speed limit, is aware of the need to avoid potholes, and knows when to apply the brakes. Mature drivers keep young passengers safe. The youngest passengers will need to be driven around for quite a while, as they graduate from infant carriers to car seats, and then out of them. Not only are they unable to drive; they don’t even know where they are going. They are along for the ride, and it’s our job to take care of them. God’s job is to take care of us; we just need to let Him. There will still be some carsickness along the way, inclement weather causing bumps in the road, and even some bad accidents. However, in the end, what passengers really want, is a trusted driver who will get them safely to their final destination. Our lives are a long rough road with many twists and turns. For Christians, all of the roads lead to the same destination…salvation through Jesus Christ, and the gift of eternal life in Heaven with our glorious God.
How do we stay out of the driver’s seat? We can pray against those negative lies, renouncing them in the name of Jesus. As we do so, the lies begin to lose their power. You may feel like you are praying against these lies all day long, but that’s the idea. Being in communication with God all day long, is to become an active part of his perfect plan for you. We can pick up our map, and ask God if we are going in the right direction. We can stop at a rest stop, and refresh ourselves with His word, when we are weary from the journey. We can take a U-turn, when we’ve gone in the wrong direction, and we can ask God and others to forgive us. We can also forgive others when they have added to our exhaustion, by leading us down the wrong road, making the journey even longer, and more painful. When we begin to take an active role in God’s perfect plan for us, we will begin to see how He is at work, even amidst our suffering. He won’t let us go. He will let us know that He is on our side, guiding us to become better Christians, so that He can begin to heal us, from the inside out. This is for our benefit, and enables God to use us in order to help advance His kingdom, so that no one gets left behind.
It really is comforting to know that we are God’s children, and that He is on our side, so we truly have nothing to fear. Nothing can stop God, as your driver, from getting you to your final destination. As Paul says in the bible, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8: 38-39 NIV). Nothing can take away God’s love and protection for us. It is only fear that lies to us, and makes us think this way. God is at work on a much bigger plan than we could ever fathom. We can actually sit back, rest, and relax knowing that we aren’t always going to understand God. In fact, most of the time we won’t. But…God knows what He is doing, and He really does have our best interests at heart, even when we don’t understand Him, and even when our hearts are filled with pain. “’For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’” declares the Lord. “’As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts’” (Isaiah 55: 8-9 NIV).