Let me tell you a story.
There once was a man who bought a car. It was a beautiful car. Leather interior, heated seats, automatic this and that; you get the picture. However, regardless of the car’s beauty, the man had bought it because this car was known for its excellent braking system.
However, after the man brought the car home, he became leery. Although he had boasted about the cars brakes himself to others, and although he had read countless reviews about how great they were, he wasn’t quite sure if he was ready to prove their quality himself. So, whenever he could, he would avoid driving. He frequently rode with friends and colleagues, and walked quite a bit as well. Even if he had to go far places, he began to become accustomed to the public transportation system. He almost always took the bus or the train.
And so, the car just sat in his garage. Often, at the start, he would come to look at it, and admire it, but after a while, that didn’t even happen. After about half a year of not even using the car at all, he began to use it to store stuff. Boxes, files, golf clubs, he finally realized the car’s real potential for holding stuff, accounting of course, that nobody could fit in the car themselves anymore. And as the car grew fuller, he stopped boasting about it, and stopped thinking about it. His friends and colleagues forgot about it.
However, there was one lady who hadn’t forgot. This lady was his wife. At dinner she began nagging him, in the way that only seasoned wives know how. Oh, how he kept coming up with excuses! And besides, he would always conclude, the car is full of stuff, it would be too much work to use it anyway.
But, as you may have guessed, his answers could not satisfy her demands. Finally, she decided to take matters into her own hands. During the day, she began to empty the car. After a week of cleaning, she promptly drove the splendid automobile to a local car lot, sold it for a considerable amount, and went on a shopping spree.
One day, the man went out to the garage to retrieve a box of files from the car. When he noticed its absence, he was furious. “What did you do with my car!” he screamed to his wife.
“Well, being how you were too scared to use it, and seeing how it wasn’t doing any good anyway sitting out in the garage, I sold it, and treated myself to a shopping spree,” she replied simply.
“Why on earth would you sell my car!” he protested, “That car had the best braking system on the planet!”
“How do you know?” she replied again, “From what I could tell the brakes were garbage, seeing as how you never drove the car. You never did really believe that the car had excellent brakes. You where too scared to use them yourself. You never actually knew their quality. And now that the car is gone, I suppose you never will.”
As you might have guessed, the story is about faith, or believing. I guess you could call it a parable, or analogy, to some extent. The man represents us. The car represents our new found, (or refreshed), faith in Christ. Just as we have trouble believing that God will provide for us, protect us, etc, the man has trouble believing that the brakes on his car will work. We may boast about our faith in Christ, but if we do not truly believe, as the man did not truly believe that his brakes will work, we become hypocrites. Oh my! Not us, surely we are not hypocrites?!? Well, we can be, and quite often, are. (Reality check, for me too…)
Eventually, just as the car sat in the garage, our faith in Christ can become left behind. And overtime, if we are not connected to God, stuff will get in the way. We call that stuff sin. Because of this, we become even more separated and disconnected from God. We may even go the extreme of completely forgetting about him. However, this is where the story, and the story of our lives have differences. God doesn’t forget about us. He desperately wants us to just as the man’s wife did, to clean up the mess, and confess our sins so that we can reconnect with God.
That’s why people like the man’s wife can be put in our lives. The people at church, pastors, small-group leaders, etc. And just like the man, sometimes, when we are far from God, we tend to avoid them, and make excuses. However, we need to embrace them! Through the body of Christ, we can receive aid in keeping on the right track, or getting back on.
So let us remember to have faith. What is it? Lets quickly remember.
“Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.” Hebrew 11:1
Throw yourself into the arms of God. Trust in him. Believe in him. He loves you. He will take care of you.