The radio, with its tiny dial and speaker, was a joy. The squeaky little horn made you think of Henry Ford every time you heard it. This was a classic car—a real treasure. The most shocking part of all was that Daddy gave it to me!
There were not many rules. The curfew of 11:00 p.m. did not change just because I was now the proud owner of an antique car. I had to purchase my own gasoline. I must always let either Momma or Daddy know where I was going to be. And finally, “Don’t let anybody drive your car.”
Well, that last directive was totally unnecessary. I wasn’t about to let anyone drive my car. My close friends either couldn’t drive, or they didn’t have a driver’s license. No, I wasn’t about to let anybody drive my car. No siree, Bob!
I was driving home one afternoon with a girlfriend. It was a beautiful Sabbath afternoon. She said, “Please let me drive!
I broke out into a cold sweat. “Do you know how to drive?” I asked.
“No, but I want you to teach me,” she replied.
I would like to say that I’m not sure how it happened. In this day and time, no one seems to take responsibility for their own actions. We always look for another person to blame, but I know exactly how this happened. I was too weak to say no to a young lady who I was still in the process of trying to impress. She was a lovely person—not at all evil—and there is really nothing wrong with a guy teaching his girlfriend to drive his car unless he has made a promise to his father as a condition of ownership.
We were less than a mile from my home. Daddy was likely to see her driving my car in direct disobedience to his instructions. I was willing to incur the wrath and displeasure of my Daddy, the giver of this wonderful gift, just so I could please my girlfriend. It is amazing how bold and brash we can be in disobedience.
Ignoring My Dad
I parked the car on the side of the road and exchanged seats. It was a special joy to put one arm around her as I gently gave instructions on the clutch, the brake, the gearshift knob, and the accelerator, but I’m sure it didn’t do much for her efficiency or focus in learning to drive.
She pressed the clutch, eased the shift into first gear, and raced the engine a little more than was necessary or safe. Then she quickly released the clutch, and we lurched off down the road. She really did pretty well until we rounded the bend near my house.
She made the bend, but on the wrong side of the road! By the time I grabbed the steering wheel to right us, we were off the left side of the road and into the ever-waiting tree. Crunch!
I banged my head on the rear-view mirror, drawing blood. If I had not been sitting so close to the driver, I probably would have escaped injury, as she did.
My head was bleeding, my heart was pounding, the left front fender of my pride and joy was horribly crumpled, and I had to walk the rest of the way home to get Daddy to come and pull me out of the ditch.
I told Daddy I had run off the road. He commented how I had been driving since I was 15, had driven trips of hundreds of miles taking him and Momma to camp meeting, and that it was very unlike me to have such a silly mishap. It was a long time before I told Daddy the truth about what really happened that day. Of course, he already knew and was just waiting for me to confess so he could tell me he had forgiven me. He went on to explain that his disappointment included not only my disobedience but also my lie, which indicated I did not trust him enough to tell him the truth.
Do you see how illogical sin is? I thought I had lied to Daddy to keep from hurting and disappointing him. I had only compounded his hurt and disappointment. Satan is tricky. He makes a perfectly illogical thing seem absolutely plausible if we listen to him. My girlfriend had done nothing wrong. He had made no promise to her father about the car. She had made a reasonable request, and I had given a totally unreasonable and irresponsible reply.
Isn’t it astounding that once you start lying, you must continue to cover the previous lie? Jesus said, “For you are the children of your father the devil, and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44, NLT).
Here is one instance when we can choose our father. When we confess our sins, we choose God as our father. We reject the devil and all his sleights of hand. And when we confess, we discover God already knows our infractions and has just been waiting for us to come to Him so He can show us He has forgiven us.
He is disappointed when we disobey Him, but He is hurt very deeply when we attempt to cover up rather than come to Him for the forgiveness, cleansing, and healing He longs to give. When we refuse to come to Him, we are saying He can’t be trusted to be just and fair and kind and good to us. Satan will repeat his oldest of lies to you: “God is unjust and a tyrant.” We really know better, but it sounds so logical. Trust in God, follow Him, and obey the rules. There aren’t many, and they are not grievous. And by the way, when He puts you in charge, don’t let anybody else drive your car.
Written by Walter L. Wright
Reprinted with permission, Lake Union Herald, November 2006, p. 16-17.© 2002 - 2023, AnswersForMe.org. All rights reserved. Click here for content usage information.