Faith: When you drive too fast for God

... Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief. St. Mark 9:24

Here it is years later, and I'm still laughing. En route to Yosemite National Park by car, my grown daughter and I debated our conflicting estimations regarding the time it would take to reach our destination.

Her prediction was of a considerably shorter duration than mine. We laughed and quipped until she emphatically blurted, "I have faith Mom. Let me drive!"

My faith walk has too often taken on similar characteristics, and the stronger the faith the more intense its bombardments. Just because we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are not automatically elevated beyond temptation, and thoughts will come to tempt us.

I could tell of hundreds of times that I had surrendered difficulties, people, and circumstances to the care of God. Then before I knew it, especially if God was not driving fast enough, I would jump behind the wheel and plow down everything and everyone that might get in my way, in order to fix whatever needed fixing, all by myself.

God's no dummy. He's not going to stop me. He's not going stay in the car with me, either. When I finally pull over, usually after the crash, there He is, waiting for me to try again to place my crumpled faith in Him.

I recall a particular long-ago time of concern for one of my children who was walking through a painful state of emotional turmoil, and I could not focus on the work before me. My powerlessness elicited feelings of what it must be like for a wild animal trapped in a cage, and I so wanted to escape the overwhelming discomfort of worrisome thoughts.

I was tempted to call my daughter with platitudes she was not ready to hear, but I knew there was little I could do to change anything. So, after fretting for too long, I offered a fervent prayer. It was then that I found peace. So did my child, in God's perfect time.

Have I ever grabbed the steering wheel right out of God's hands?

Whatever prompts me to such action?

When shall I relinquish my hold on people, places, and things?

Lord, today I choose to let you do the driving. I may not appreciate the pace, but at least I'll arrive at my destination in one piece.

Adapted from Finding the Flowers in a Prickly World. Wilson can be reached at