The other day I had the opportunity to take a friend out in our car for some driving practice. She’s taking private lessons in basic driver’s ed as she works towards getting her license, so extra road time is always welcome.
We started in a community center parking lot not far from my house. My friend was in the driver’s seat and I was a passenger passing out directions and what I hoped were words of wisdom. We practiced pulling into parking places, watching to make sure the car was straight and situated between the yellow lines. We pulled ahead, backed up, drove around the lot and tried again … and again. Next we did a couple of three-point turns. Several other drivers came and went from the parking lot as we practiced, no doubt wondering what on earth we were doing. Most of them kept their distance, giving us lots of room to manoever.
Leaving the relative safety of the parking lot we then ventured out onto the streets. We drove up and down and around through the quieter places in my neighborhood. Finally, a little later, we emerged onto several of the busier city streets where the driving became a little more challenging. My friend did exceedingly well. She followed my instructions, talked out loud to herself about what she was doing (as all new drivers do), and finally brought us safely to our appointed destination — home.
In reflecting on this driving experience with my friend I realized that God was speaking to me about some important truths.
I was reminded that in this journey we call Life, it’s best to pay close attention to the Instructor. I need to practice listening to His voice. I must be willing to quickly respond to His directions. I will undoubtedly find it necessary to talk myself through situations I encounter and I must not hesitate to ask Him for advice. He has a reputation after all, as the Wonderful Counsellor and the Good Teacher.
There will be times in my life when I can simply proceed straight ahead. There will also be times to back up and re-manoever so that I am situated “between the lines” in the center of His will.
Occasionally I must do a three point turn and head back the way I came.
I have to be aware of obstacles that may cause me to crash if I don’t detour around them.
Sometimes a sharp turn to the right or left is called for, a stop or a yield.
There may be pedestrians walking through my life who need to be noticed or given space.
It may be necessary for me to speed up or slow down depending on the circumstances. I must be alert and ready to change lanes should the need arise.
I should be observant of the gathering gloom at day’s end and make sure the light I have is not only shining to illumine my path, but is visible to others passing by.
And finally, I need to never lose sight of where I’m going. My destination is home – the place where I know I will be greeted by Someone who loves me, and where I will find a welcome after my long journey.
Basic driver’s ed is necessary for those who want to safely travel our highways and bi-ways. It’s also highly recommended it for those who desire to navigate safely through life. The other day I had a refresher course – and I’m glad I did!