Recently our family was introduced to the “L” word. Just thinking of it causes us to break out in a cold sweat. The L word is “Learner”. We have teenagers learning to drive.
What is the most frightening thing is not that they could make a mistake and cause damage to the car. Although the thought of that is frightening. The most frightening thing is where I have to sit. In the passenger seat. I am no longer the one in control.
When I am in the drivers seat, I am the one making the decisions. I decide where we will go and how we will get there. I decide the speed we go, and the lane we are in. When I am in the drivers seat I am in control.
In the passenger seat, I am allowing the driver to make these decisions. It is an expression of trust in the one who is driving.
Francis Chan in his book “Forgotten God” makes this observation:
“I honestly believe that most of us—while we might say we want to be led by the Spirit—are actually scared of this reality. I know I am. What would it mean? What if He asks you to give up something you’re not ready to give up? What if He leads you where you don’t want to go? What if he tells you to change jobs? To move? Are you willing to surrender to Him, no matter where He wants to take you? Am I?”
In short, what would it be like if I let God take the driver’s seat in my life? Unlike my experience of sitting in the drivers seat, when Jesus is in the drivers seat, he is not learning. I am. I am learning how I should have been driving all along. I am discovering that the best life I could live might be in a different lane to the one I would have chosen.
I am learning that I do not need to be in control, but it requires trust. Another word for trust might be faith. I am learning the life of faith in Jesus. Not just when it is convenient. Not just when I want a break from driving. But it is learning to have faith in him all the time.
Where is Jesus for you? In the back seat? Is he even in the car with you? Perhaps you have him in the passenger seat? Are you ready to let him drive? If you do, there will be moments of disorientation and moments when you want to be back in the drivers seat. But what you will discover is that the one in the vehicle learning is you. Learning to live the life you were created and designed to live.