Jan’s Subaru Impreza is 9 years old and my Nissan pickup just celebrated its 15th year. They don’t have lots of gadgets and features. Both vehicles are plain vanilla versions of their respective brands. The best feature on both of our cars is one not provided by any dealer. It is a feature called “Paid Off – No Car Payments.” I recommend this feature above all others being offered.
I was looking at some YouTube videos about new cars and their technology just to be up to speed on what’s out there in the event that someday we need to buy another car. The features some of these new vehicles come with are amazing. The list includes adaptive cruise control, rearview cameras, pedestrian warning, dash lights letting parents know if the kids in the back seat have their seat belts fastened and the list goes on. It is truly amazing.
The one piece of technology that creeps me out is the lane assist function. The car’s computer reads the white lines on the sides of the road and turns the steering wheel to keep the car within its lane. I recently drove a friend's new car with this feature and didn’t like it. I like to drive my car. I don’t like a car to drive me. That is one option I would either disconnect or not consider as important in a future purchase decision.
The lives of some people remind me of the lane assist feature. Someone or something seems to be driving them. They have taken their hands off the steering wheel of their life and a separate decision-making entity is doing the navigating.
Alongside God’s love for us, our free will is our next most precious gift. God gave us a free will to make choices no one else can make for us. There is no faith lane assist function for our spiritual life. God honors our freedom to make our own decisions, good or bad. God wants our hands on the steering wheel of life, sensing the nuances of our faith and the surface of the unique road He has called each of us to travel.
If someone or something is calling the shots on the roadway of your faith, turn off their influence and put your hands back on the steering wheel. Your faith is not supposed to be a robotic experience where you are only a passenger along for the ride. God wants you to make the turns of your life in concert with the direction of the Spirit. That is the safest and most freeing way to travel through life.