Test Drive

I drove a Chevy Suburban for 19 years. I had three different versions—each one fueled by dog hair and the smell of soccer cleats—and they were all faithful.

Two years ago, with the empty nest looming, Robbie suggested that it was time to find a smaller, more fuel-efficient car. I wasn’t sure I was ready to say goodbye to my current road-beast, but I agreed to take a few test drives.

Oh my! Two decades and four kids’ worth of life behind the wheel of a tank had not prepared me for the feel of these younger, snappier cars. I took the on-ramps like I was channeling Danica, and even the salesman in the passenger seat marveled at my donuts in the parking lot. By the time we’d left the third dealership, I was hooked.

Ultimately, though, Robbie decided that our years of hauling kids and stuff were not quite finished, so I settled back in to my cracked-leather seat, content to pick old French fries off the floor and watch the odometer creep toward 200,000. I was happy, but my brief stint behind the wheels of those zippy little cars showed me something I had never known: They felt safe, even on the curves.

I can’t help but think that it’s like that with the Bible. God knew that we’d need some good promises to keep us from drifting onto the bumpy shoulder of fear and worry. But until we take these promises for a test drive—until we try them out at high speed, and on the twists and turns of life—we will never know how well they work.

One of my favorite ways to get behind the wheel of God’s promises is to pray them over my family. If I fear for my daughter’s safety, I might borrow from Psalm 91:11 and pray that God would command his angels to guard her in all her ways. If my kids are picking at each other, I turn to Ephesians 4:29 and ask that no unwholesome talk would come out of their mouths, but only what is beneficial and helpful for building each other up. And when my husband faces challenges at work, I ask God to cover him with favor and establish the work of his hands, which is a prayer lifted right out of Psalm 90:17.

If you’d like to test drive a few promises of your own, check out the verse-of-the-week on this website, or just open your Bible and pick something that suits. Let the words soak into your mind. Read and pray them over and over, getting a feel for how they handle. Put your children’s names right into the verse, as though you were buckling them in.

And then get ready. The curves will come, you’ll meet some falling rocks, and there will be plenty of places that are slippery when wet. But when you stake your hope on God’s Word, trusting in his infinite power and his steadfast love, you can drive with confidence, knowing that He will bring your family safely home.

Leave a Reply