“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” (James 4:8a NAS)
Palms clammy, shoulders tight, I review the rules. Everything hinges on the next 15 minutes. An older lady slides into my car, clipboard in hand. Her mouth tightens as her bare legs hit the hot leather seat. “We start with parallel parking.” She points to two posts ahead. “If you hit a post you fail.”
My eyes bug out. Why didn’t I drive Dad’s compact instead of Mom’s van? Is it too late to reschedule? I wipe my sweaty hands on my shorts, reposition them to 10 and 2, swallow thickly and inch forward. Line up with the poles. Turn the wheel. Back it up. Slight correction. Straighten out. The poles are still standing. With a sigh of relief, I put the van in park.
Clipboard Lady opens her door and motions me to look down.
I paralleled parked perfectly—three feet from the curb.
That’s just like reading the Word, showing up for church, lip-syncing worship—never allowing God to truly impact my heart. While I look straight and I’m lined up in-between the posts, I’m not protected from the flow of traffic. When I look like I’m following God, but I’m really just following the motions, my heart and mind aren’t protected from a culture that says anything goes.
What can I do?
I can reposition—let my tires rub against the curb. Let my life rub against God.
When I read the Word, I can open my heart. When I’m finished, I can dedicate my day to Him. I can stay close. Stay protected. Stay perfectly centered exactly where He wants me to be.
This devotional won Best Devotional at the North Texas Christian Writer’s 2011 Conference
If you have a teen, know a teen, or love a teen, please pass it on!