This morning I was driving home from work after a relatively easy night. I had spent a good portion of the night preaching to a couple of individuals. After overhearing them talk about the current war in Iraq, I felt compelled to offer my take. Their take was that it was "all about the oil...." My take was that that was probably true; along with a whole hosts of other reasons like terrorism and weapons of mass destruction, etc., BUT, that the war was about something more profound. It is about religion and enmity between two groups of people. I won't replay the speech I gave, only just to say that a discussion along these lines had resulted in an opportunity for me to spread the Word and tie in the connection to God. Of course that was my main point anyway- God is connected to everything that takes place down here on this Rock. This is His Rock.
This was what I was replaying over in my mind as I drove home this cold winter morning. I guess I was having one of those moments where you try to pray with your eyes open- conversing with God while driving (D.W.P.). Yes, at that moment I remember asking God if I had done the right thing, etc. It probably went something like: "God I was wondering if....." And then- BAMMMM!!!!! A big rock smashed into my windshied; thrown from a passing car- hitting my windshield and cracking it just above the rear-view mirror. I was not filled immediately with disappointment, but rather with relief! I drive a 1983 Ford LTD- personally camoflauged with Krylon spray paint, so the rock did not cause much cosmetic damage.
Still, the moment cause me to have an instant revelation. I do felt that it was as if I had asked God for an answer or sign of some sort, and he had instantly delivered. Sometimes, this is just the way that God works- sometimes. And know this: I am not one of those people who sees a limb fall off of a tree, and immediately tags it as a "Sign from God."
But I immediately began thinking along those lines, and quickly realized that my faith- most people's faith- is just like the windshield on my old junker. A windshield is protection- protection from the wind and from rocks. In fact, as I drove on, a news item on the radio told of two boys arrested for dropping pumpkins off of the overpass on Interstate 35, somewhere in Dallas. So, windshields can deflect a lot more than the wind- they can even be a "Pumpkinshield."
So now the metaphors and analogies start flying!!!!! I see that our faith and our grace provided by God is much like the windshield. Some people's windshields are cracked- some more than others. A lot of the times, we look right through that windshield and don't even see the glass- not until it is cracked or blemished. If we are not careful, we keep on driving while we stare at the new blemish (sin), and it can in turn distract us, causing an even more catastrophic chain of events than the original rock.
Jesus Christ is our windshield! Like the body panels and hood and bumper, the glass is a form of armor. It protects us from the tiniest of particles, to the largest of projectiles, and most of the time, people do not even notice it. But there it is. And there He is- all around us; in front of us. Sometimes we look right through Him, and do not even see Him. Of course, in this analogy, those rocks are sin. Some people seem to have magnetic-like attractions for these sins and rocks. When they hit these peoples' windshields, they scream and curse, and in the case of cracks and chips (or bad times in our lives) we lash out in anger! Why did God let this happen to me? (not knowing that things could have even been worse, had it not been for God or the windshield.)
For the True Believer though- those of us redeemed through the Blood of Christ. We are thankful. Others though never see the glass. They are not thankful for each morning that they wake up, or every breath they take, or every stale piece of bread that touches their lips. No, they only mention God when the rocks start flying at them. And then it is, "Why did He let this happen!" or "Why didn't He do something?"
Like the windshield, most of our glass is flawed to some degree. If you really really look up close, you will see a blemish or two. These are caused by little bugs and pebbles that you never saw bounce off of your glass. Jesus saw them though. He is by our side- even when we aren't thinking about Him. He is protecting us. He is protecting HIS investment. He takes pride in the way the Manufacturer made the product, and He wants to keep it intact as long as possible. (will you pass inspection?)
Don't wait until the glass is cracked before you notice the glass. When it is doing it's job, you usually never notice. But, sometimes you do every now and then, when you drive down that Highway of Life. I'm glad my glass is still intact- flaws and all. I'll take flawed glass over no glass any day!
Thank you Jesus!!!!
Hebrews 11:3-6 By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead. By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
I really like the analogy you used as Christ being our windshield. One point you made that hit home for me was focusing on the damage done by the rock, instead of realizing that if not for God as our windshield, or protector, the damage could have been a lot worse! Thanks for this. It was a good word. God bless you. ~Mary