Is God your steering wheel or your spare tire? (or, church signs that make me mad)
I was driving to Target today when I passed a church with this question on its sign. I, of course, was outraged and inspired to come home and blog about it. :) This is the problem with the modern church - ultimately, all of the problems with the modern church boil down to this question from that sign. The answer is an EMPHATIC neither. God is neither my steering wheel nor my spare tire. I am offended that we, as a society, would even denegrate the one and only God to a metaphor of car parts. I know we must try to be cute and catchy to get modern churchgoers into our doors, but apostasy in the attempt is unforgivable. God is the gentle shepherd who loves and cares for His sheep; He knows them and they know Him. God is a potter who sculpts our lives into being for either honorable or dishonorable use. God is the vineyard keeper, gently lifting up grafted vines to allow them to grow better while clipping away the vines that are bearing no fruit. God is the author and the finisher of our faith. He gave the gift of His Son to save our souls, and because of that, we should never doubt His provision for us of anything else since He has already given the most precious gift He can. God foreknew us in eternity past, elected us and pursued us when we wanted nothing to do with Him. God is three but also one. He has no beginning and no end; He needs nothing and we can offer Him nothing that He doesn't already have. Everything we do offer Him, He gives us to offer. To limit God to one of these two positions is ridiculous at best and blasphemous at most. He is neither the steering wheel or the spare tire, even though I know what the right answer was supposed to be.
This is the problem with our modern church and our modern faith. Do you see it? Whether God is our steering wheel or spare tire, you are the one driving the car. That is fundamentally incorrect. Whether you depend on God or not, He is the driver of your car. Period. Now the problem with the metaphor is that it makes little of God. God has been diminished to merely a tool for us to use, whichever we choose, not the Almighty Alpha and Omega, Creator of Heaven and Earth. That is the foundation of all our modern faith's shortcomings: it makes little of God. We think we know Him, we think we have Him completely figured out. The truth is just the opposite. We will never figure God out all the way. Personally, I'm thankful for that. I'm thankful that I worship and serve a God that cannot be comprehended by the finite human mind. Who would want to serve a God they fully understood? Not me.
While I was at Target, looking for a small back-to-school present for Adam, I overheard two ladies talking in the next aisle over. I wasn't purposely eavesdropping, but they were discussing the fact that now that their children were out of the house, they didn't even bother to make dinner anymore. The exact quote from one of them was, "There's no point to even making dinner anymore, because, for who?" And I thought to myself instantly, "For your husband!!" Now I'm not bragging because I know women who do this exact thing just like me, but the second I got home from school, daycare and dropping off library things that were due today, I changed clothes and threw together a very simple pasta dinner so that our family could eat dinner together in the 15 minutes between Adam getting home from school and going to GameStop. I could have fed Charlotte anything; I made dinner for him, because I know that on a day when he's home for about an hour and a half total, a homemade dinner matters. There's a reason for making food for your husband, even beyond the essential you've-gotta-eat reason. It's so that he knows you care for him and about him, enough to bend over backwards to provide him with a homecooked meal. Now, sometimes I can't make it happen and we wind up eating out, but those times make today's rushed pasta dinner that much more special because I could've given up when I got home, and I didn't.
What a thoughtful post for you all...who knew I still had it in me? You know Who gets all the glory for it though. SDG