I grew up in Flint, Michigan and thinking back over my childhood, I have countless fond memories of those youthful years growing up in “the mitten”. I vividly remember playing hopscotch with friends, having double-dutch competitions to see who could jump rope the longest, and cheerleading - although there was no football team! We didn’t have much, but those were magical times filled with lots of love and laughter. And as nostalgia brings back to mind many images from that care-free time, the memories that are most vivid began with Mama yelling to us from the porch, “Y’all come on, and get in the car!”
“Get in the car!”
Simple words, no doubt, that convey little meaning to most. But for me, they were always music to my ears. I loved hearing those words because they meant we were going somewhere - with Mama. She would be driving, of course, and all we had to do was “get in the car”. None of us ever asked where we would be going and Mama never told us; somehow, it didn’t matter. She’s Mama, and we trusted her.
As Mama steered the old Buick Riviera down the streets of Flint, I fixed my gaze out of the window and took in the scenery. At different points along the way, there were businesses, tree-lined streets, homes, and other children at play. My siblings and I would take notice of other motorists and see who could shout, “that’s my car” the fastest! Somehow, we thought we could actually lay claim to someone else’s vehicle while riding along in ours! Yes, those were carefree times and we always felt safe with Mama behind the wheel.
Just as I held an unwavering trust for my mother as I rode in the backseat of that Buick, God is calling us to do the same with Him as we “ride” through life. Trust God and “get the car”. The destination is sometimes unclear, the route often unfamiliar, and the scenes along the way are constantly changing. Some are very pleasant, filled with good times, good people, and much joy; others are frightful and full of loneliness, loss, and pain. Nevertheless, we must continue to trust God’s plan and know that, ultimately, as long as we are riding with the Master, all will be well. And while the vehicle by which God is transporting us along this journey does not have four tires and a steering wheel, it does come equipped with its own navigation system -- the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit dwells in each of us and guides us along the terrain of life. There will be good times; there will be bad times, but the one constant is God and His unfailing love. The good times highlight His grace, mercy, and favor. The bad times demonstrate His faithfulness, no matter what may be going on. When the road ahead is smooth and easy -- praise God! When the road ahead is rough and difficult to navigate -- praise God! Tough times don’t negate who He is and we worship Him because of who He is. So, even though you may be unclear of the destination -- you haven’t asked or God hasn’t yet told you -- “get in the car” anyway. Do your work and trust Him with the rest. He is faithful and it is assured that you will reach the destination and, ultimately, get the victory!
Get in the car!