This fall we gave our youngest daughter our decade old mid-sized sedan to take to college and purchased a replacement vehicle for lucky me. We ended up with an SUV but because I am a farm gal I like calling it a truck instead which sounds farmish. We chose it in part because Farmer Jay drives a truck and it was hard for the old man (I can say this because he is eight years my senior and qualifies for Medicare on his next birthday) to get in and out of the sedan, but mostly because I fell for it the minute I got behind the wheel. This rig is six years newer than my old car and a lot has changed in that small span of time. The common-sense things haven’t changed take for instance when we (we meaning Farmer Jay) changes the oil we replace it with oil, not orange juice. That would be dumb and ruin the motor. And listen, I for one, don’t need to know the whys of how it all works, I turn the key and it starts and that serves me just right. But there are plenty of things I do need to understand to get the most out of my relationship with my automobile. Therefore, I decided to read the owner’s manual. Can you believe it? You know what I am talking about and just why do I hate to read the owner’s manuals anyway? After all the manufacturer included it for me so I could have a better experience.
By today’s standards the fanciest part of my previous car is the satellite radio and seat heaters. But with my new wheels things aren’t as simple. The owner’s manual told me about all the important things and the fluff stuff it can do. I won’t remember it all, so I know that I will be referring to it again and again. One thing I will remember is the lane control button. It beeps at me if I slip out of my lane. I kept it turned on until Farmer Jay said it would help remind him about my bad driving. Then I promptly shut it off. But, that feature may help save my life if I take my eyes off the road, so I think I will turn it back on, regardless of my dear husband’s snarky comments. In fact, it probably would be best if I continue to refer to the manual in order to reduce the likely hood of serious trouble in the future.
I too came with an owner’s manual. The Bible, AKA the Holy Word of God and golly, since He is my (yours too!) manufacturer and He dictated it for all of us to read; wouldn’t it make sense to read it? That way we might have not only a better relationship with ourselves but with Him and with other humans. A few years back when I was younger, life was simpler. Today it’s more complicated. And my foolish pride is the only reason I didn’t read and trust in the Owner’s Manual. I spent far too much time looking left or right or at other human beings instead of up and down and in The Book to operate my life. And it shows.
Thank goodness, I finally did because it was there and only there I found complete truth. I won’t remember it all so I need to refer to it again and again. It has the instructions I need to be sure my soul returns to the factory (Heaven) once my body ends up in the boneyard. Not only that, I live in enemy (Satan) occupied territory here on earth and boy do I need to know the important stuff and the fluff stuff so I can keep my eyes on Jesus. That way I am less likely to wander out of my lane (the narrow road) and crash into someone else. Joseph Stalin once said that America is like a healthy body with God as the head. But somewhere along the line we chopped off the head. Instead of checking the Manufacturer’s Owner’s Manual in our confused attempt to play little g gods, we make up our own rules and/or make the rules our god. Which causes us to stumble along like the blind leading the blind rather than admitting that our Big G God – our Manufacturer -Creator – know what’s best for us. We are substituting orange juice for oil and the end result is ruination.
The old line no God, no peace holds true and I see it all around us in the world today. Just so, the second part of the line: Know God, know peace is true in the midst of the world’s chaos. And there is only one place to get to know Him, the Bible, and only Christianity promotes a personal relationship with the God of the Universe and folks that is accomplished by believing and following Jesus Christ. I have found it is not enough to simply believe in God, I must believe God.
Honestly, I don’t know how my truck works and I don’t know how God works either and frankly I don’t care because since I began reading and following, my life is so much better. Not trouble free, but fear free! And joy filled despite the troubles that do come. But I do know this, if I continue to refer to and trust in the Manufacturer Owner’s Manual, I will reduce the likely hood of serious trouble in the future. ©
“The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble, and he knoweth them that trust in Him. Nahum 1:7 KJV
Happy reading and you will be:
Be joy filled always,