Tapping their feet nervously, three men stood in line, each awaiting an interview for a highly paid job during a time of severe economic recession.
Finally, seated before the interviewer, the first man was posed this question. “You are being interviewed for the position of truck driver on the most dangerous road in the world, the 43-mile-long Unduavi-Yolosa Highway in Bolivia.
On one side, the road clings to the cliffs of the Andes Mountains; on the other side there is a precipice with a 1600 foot plunge to the ravine below. There are no guard rails at all; only crosses placed by grieving relatives of the thousands who have plunged to their deaths since the highway was built 60 years ago.
Would your normal driving habits permit you to drive at the edge of the road next to the precipice, or in the middle of the road, or snugly against the mountain?”
The first man answered without hesitation. “I could easily drive right along the edge. I’m a skilled and confident driver and I’ve never had a wreck. I’m not afraid of anything and I’m willing to take risks to get the truck to its destination on time. I’m your man. ”
The second man responded, “I would stay in the middle of the road because I feel safest there. You can always count on me to arrive safely.”
The third man replied, “I would stay as far from the edge of the precipice as possible to protect myself, the truck and its cargo. I would not drive in the middle because I could get hit from trucks coming from both directions. I would seek the safest place possible and that would be driving snugly against the mountain.”
His answer won him the job.
This is also the best answer for our walk with Christ as we face a New Year.
Unlike the first man, we should remember there is danger in taking risks with the imminent threat of falling deeply into an abyss the enemy of our souls has prepared for us. Flirting with temptation has led many Christians off the road resulting in serious injury to their faith and their testimonies, affecting not only themselves but their families as well.
Unlike the second man, we should not compromise our faith and judgment by assuming a middle of the road stance, never taking a firm stand on our beliefs but fruitlessly carving out a road that accommodates all positions, thereby offending no one.
Rather, like the third man who responded, we should cling to the security of the mountain, acknowledging our complete dependence on the God of the mountain to keep us safe and secure in our faith til we reach our final destination: heaven.
“Thou wilt show me the road of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” Psalm 16:11)
Mariane Holbrook is a retired teacher, an author of two books, a musician and artist. She lives with her husband on coastal North Carolina. She maintains a personal website www.marianholbrook.com and welcomes your Emails at Mariane777@bellsouth.net.