Driving Lessons

Teaching your fifteen year-old son to drive is no small task. Kids. They grow up too fast.

Two days ago, I allowed my son Wyatt to drive home after we got hair cuts, and boy, let me tell you it was an experience! Up to that point, he’d only driven in parking lots and around our residential neighborhood, but he hadn’t gotten the car over forty-five miles per hour until our drive home from Great Clips.

His hands were shaking as we pulled onto Dallas Highway and accelerated. A car pulled up beside us, and I’m pretty sure the driver recognized there was a teenager at the wheel when he noticed our swerving. The driver looked over at us briefly and then hit his accelerator. He was gone in no time.

The scariest part of the drive for me came right after I told Wyatt to try to keep the same safe distance between our car and the one in front of us. At that moment, two things happened. The first was that he accelerated (Had he hit the gas instead of the brake?), and the second is that a traffic light a hundred yards in front of us turned red. We were doing fifty. The car in front of us started slowing down, and I just about gave into the temptation of jumping into Wyatt’s lap and pounding my foot on the brake. Somehow Wyatt slowed down in time, and we managed to make it home in one piece. When we arrived at home, Wyatt’s hands were still shaking, and I must admit my hands were shaking as well!

This morning as I was reflecting on what God’s been teaching me, I was brought back to that moment. Just as I so badly wanted to jump in the driver’s seat and take control of the car, I so often want to take the driver’s seat of my own life and try to control things. I do this with my kids. Instead of allowing them to make mistakes and learn from them, I want to steer their lives and keep them out of harm’s way. I do this with my job. Whenever things don’t go just the way I want them to go, I get frustrated. I do this so often with my finances, my ministry, and in so many other areas.

The thing about God, as He’s taught me so many times, is that He wants us to trust Him. Although we might think we’re in control, we’re not. God’s always in control. Peace and a positive sense of well-being can only be found when we just allow Him to be in the driver’s seat of our lives.

Oh, I hope one day soon I can trust Wyatt enough that I can find peace and a positive sense of well-being in our car as well!



photo credit: marfis75 Don’t stop ( #cc ) via photopin (license)

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About Chad Young

Chad Young works in full-time college ministry, serving as Cru Global’s national director over the southeast region, leading the ministries in FL, GA, AL, and MS. He has served on the staff of Cru for fifteen years. He is the author of Authenticity: Real Faith in a Phony, Superficial World (InterVarsity Press), a discipleship-training manual, and magazine articles for Worldwide Challenge and The Collegiate. He frequently speaks at retreats and conferences and regularly writes devotionals for his website, Chad, with his wife Elizabeth, travels the country to speak at churches and train church leaders how to make Biblical disciples. Chad currently resides in Atlanta, GA, with his wife Elizabeth and their four young children, Wyatt, Clark, Evelyn, and Josilynn. His hobbies include cheering on his kids in sports, following college football, and laughing with family around the backyard fire pit.
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