Let’s Stop Asking God to Be Our Backseat Driver for Familiar Places—and Let Him Guide Us to New Ones

Andy AbeleinI really appreciated these insights from Andy Abelein, a young man I love, and who loves Jesus. (He’s the son of Brenda, one of our wonderful ministry assistants at Eternal Perspective Ministries.) Andy recently graduated from California Baptist University and works on staff at The Grove Community Church in Riverside, California.

As you read Andy’s thoughts, I hope you’ll open up your heart and mind and consider what new places and situations God may want to guide you to. And may I do the same! —Randy Alcorn

What if God wants us to actually learn and remember what it looks like to follow Him, instead of having to ask Him for a map and directions every time?

Basketball CourtI don't know about you, but when I drive places, I usually use my GPS. It tells me step by step how to get somewhere; where to turn, how fast I can go, where and how soon my next turn is going to be. It guides me there. And it's a useful, and sometimes necessary, tool when I'm going somewhere new; a place I'm not familiar getting to. But eventually, I ditch the GPS because I remember how to get there. I'm familiar with getting there. I've been there so many times with the guidance of my GPS, telling me how to get there safely and where to turn, that I don't need it anymore. I know the turns. I know the directions. I have them in my memory. Therefore, I have no real need to see them anymore. In fact, many of us (myself included) get annoyed when someone tells us how to get somewhere we already know how to get to, right? We call them backseat drivers. And we hate them!

But what if that's exactly what we are asking God to be? What if we just want Him to be our backseat driver? Constantly telling us what He's already told us and leading us somewhere He's already led us many times over. Now don't get me wrong, we HAVE to ask for God's guidance. We HAVE to rely on His strength and guidance. Without it we are all lost. But what if God expects us to learn and remember the directions He gives us? What if He is more interested in navigating us to NEW territories? To NEW locations? To places that we MUST rely on Him. Places that we need a GPS to get to and navigate through. Places that we have no choice but to either be completely lost on our own or completely reliant on His guidance.

Maybe if you know how to handle everything in your life and you’re comfortable with all your everyday situations, it’s time to lean into God and let Him lead you somewhere new. Somewhere unknown and scary. Somewhere that you can’t get to on your own.

Just a thought for today.

Photo credits: map photo by Milada Vigerova / Other photos courtesy Andy Abelein