Saturday, September 22, 2012

Night driver

When I was a young dad with wife and four sons in tow, we used to travel every year, at least once, but sometimes several times, from Portland, Oregon, to Kelowna, British Columbia, usually for a vacation stay at Nana’s house (my mother-in-law) in the summer time, but occasionally even in late autumn with snow already on the roads.

Until my boys grew up, I was the only driver in the family; my wife never learned to drive. The trip was, with two or three rest stops, a twelve to fourteen hour drive each way. When the journey got a late start, it would be dark night near the end of it, and there was always the possibility that I could fall asleep at the wheel. Thank God, that never happened, not even close. But I had a method to keep myself awake on those long drives.

I would alternate the heater with the air conditioner, so that when I began to get drowsy, I’d change from one to the other. The passengers were usually by this time all asleep and didn’t notice or complain about what I was doing. When the heat was on and I got drowsy, I’d switch to the A/C, and when it got so cold in the car I was again beginning to fall asleep, I’d turn the heat on and point the vents at my face. Hot, then cold. Cold, then hot.

Not the heat, not the cold, were what mattered, were what I was all about, but getting my family and myself to our destination, that was the ticket. The alternative to a safe arrival was unthinkable, so whatever it took to get us there, that’s what I did. I think the application of scripture to our lives is something like the heat and the cold, alternating back and forth on our night journey, keeping us awake, so we reach our destination.

Even the Law of God, even the Sabbath, is not more important than the salvation of a single human soul, ‘for the Son of Man is master even of the Sabbath,’ and He has also given us the authority, His authority, to choose what is best, when, why, where and how, so that we reach the place of safety, and joy, that He has gone to prepare for us. The love of God is undoubted, it is His essence. His wrath is what we see when we look at Him without wanting Him.

And it was to want Him, that’s why He created us, so ‘Face could look upon face,’ because He first wanted us.

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