My new job finds me driving on the 101 Northbound 2 or 3 times a week. Each trip takes around 45 minutes. There are various ways to pass the time and I have found some to be more meaningful than others. Despite my great desire for the radio to tell me who to vote for or what a horrible candidate Trump or Hillary is, I find I am doing a few things more often than others. I listen to music that draws me into Christ's presence, I drive in silence so I can pray or I listen to the Scriptures. Super spiritual huh?
On a recent drive, while listening to the Gospel of Luke, I watched the traffic flow in, around and before me. My lane was moving slowly as were the other lanes. Cars jockeyed for position and cut one another off in an effort to get ahead. I felt the urge to change lanes so I could get ahead and move more quickly. In that moment some questions came to me.
Why? Why do you need to get ahead? What is your hurry?
The obvious answer came very quickly. 'Because I want to get where I am going.' Really? I realized I would get where I was going short of an accident. So what was my desire about?
Another question came pretty quickly and is one that I often ask myself. What are you afraid of Bob?Are you afraid someone will get the better of you? Are you afraid you will wreck (a reasonable fear on the 101 in the a.m.!)? While my mind was pondering these things, the Scriptures came to the place where John the Baptizer was speaking in Chapter 3.
7 John said to the crowds coming out to be baptized by him, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? 8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. 9 The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.”
10 “What should we do then?” the crowd asked.
11 John answered, “Anyone who has two shirts should share with the one who has none, and anyone who has food should do the same.”
I was driving like someone with no shirts. I was driving like I was afraid and had a deep need. Am I really that person? Do I have two shirts? Because of Christ and His work in my life, I believe I have more to offer. I have two shirts. Not just from a material resource position but from an emotional position. Are my needs being met by Christ? Can I make space in my heart for people to receive what I have even when driving?
I made room for people around me that day. I hope to continue to be that guy on the road driving and giving space to people on the road because I have space in my heart.