Monday, February 14, 2011

Backseat Drivers

Greyhound Bus Company used to have a slogan "Go Greyhound—and leave the driving to us." Now of course their slogan meant that you could sit back and enjoy having someone else drive. I am quite sure their slogan was not an indirect way of asking you not to interfere with the drivers, as if to say “please leave us alone while we’re driving!”

But a lot of people approach God this way. Instead of being able to relax and enjoy His driving, they become very expert ‘back-seat’ drivers. I think the most annoying thing about a backseat driver is his/her assumption that you, the driver, don’t know what you are doing. How insulting! So why do we presume to tell God how to direct our lives? ‘But I would never do that,’ you say. Well, may I suggest that whenever you complain about one of God's “turns,” you are back-seat driving.

During a time when Israel refused to follow the Lord, the prophet Isaiah spoke for God: “I am patiently waiting for you to return (let me back in the diver's seat), and when you do, your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, turn to the right or to the left” (Is. 30:18, 21 author’s translation). They were definitely going the wrong way on a one-way street, and God was trying to turn them around. But they paid no attention; and got into a terrible accident (they drove right into their enemy's camp and were slaughtered!). Maybe God’s word to us is not to unlike the Greyhound Bus Company slogan: “leave the driving to Me.”

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