25 Focus your eyes straight ahead;
keep your gaze on what is in front of you.
26 Watch your feet on the way,
and all your paths will be secure.
27 Don’t deviate a bit to the right or the left;
turn your feet away from evil. Proverbs 4:25-27
When I was 11 years old my family made a trip to see my grandparents over the Christmas/New Year celebrations. They lived just about 3 hours from us and we decided to make our way back home on New Year’s day, after dinner.
My oldest brother had his driver’s license and wanted to drive; since he was a good driver (he had been driving since the age of 9, a story for another day), my dad gave him the car keys. Since we had waited until after dinner to leave, we were driving down a 2-lane highway, with a shoulder on either side, in the dark of night.
Our car was full, my parents, all 3 of my brothers, my oldest brother’s girlfriend, at the time, and me. In the front seat sat my oldest brother, Mike, our dad, and Mike’s girlfriend, who sat in the middle between Mike and my Dad. My mom and I were in the middle row and my other two brothers sat in the third seat in the back of the station wagon.
We were about half of the way home, when I heard my brother say, “Dad, what should I do?” My brother’s voice did not sound normal to me, he sounded frightened and that was definitely not normal for him. My big brother has never been easily frightened by anything and to tell you the truth up to that point I don’t believe that I had ever seen him scared. But, I knew something was very wrong just by the tone of his voice. I was trying to see over the seat but, my mom told me to sit back and be quiet. I listened for my Dad to answer my brother, “Mike, I want you to stay in this lane. Do not switch lanes until I tell you to, do you understand what I am telling you, son? Stay in your lane until I tell you to switch.”
I could practically feel the fear pouring from my parents and Mike as we drove down that highway and still I had no idea what was going on. Mike quietly said to my dad, “I understand Dad.” No argument, no questioning, just a quiet acceptance from my brother that our Dad knew what he was talking about and that Mike would do what Dad told him to do.
It was so quiet in our car and it was almost like everyone was holding their breath. My other 2 brothers and I had no idea what was happening, I could not see over the seat and the way they were facing only allowed them to look out the back of the car to see where we had been, not where we were headed. The three of us had no idea that another car was driving down the highway, in our lane, headed straight for us.
We all sat in that car with my brother at the wheel driving down that highway toward that other car for about five minutes. To this day my parents and my brother all say those five minutes were the longest of their life. At the very last-minute, right before my Dad was going to tell Mike to change lanes; the other driver went back into the correct lane and I heard my Dad say, “Thank you God.”
Can you imagine the thoughts that were running through Mike’s mind as he drove that car down that highway straight at another vehicle??? My brother had to focus on what was right in front of him, and at the same time listen and wait for the sound of his father’s voice to give him direction. Mike could not look to the right or the left, he could not take his eyes off of the road, and he had to do exactly what dad told him to do, at the exact right time. He also could not allow his mind to go off into all the possible scenario’s of what could go wrong; he had to concentrate on what was right in front of him and not let anything distract him from the wisdom of our dad.
Do you realize the trust my brother had to have had in my Dad to stay in his lane and not move out of it until my Dad told him too? Mike was 16 years old and he had not been driving for very long, it took a lot of faith and trust in my Dad for Mike to listen and do exactly what he had been told to do. He must have felt like he was on a suicide mission.
My Dad’s understanding and knowledge of driving was greater than my brother’s and my Dad needed Mike to believe and trust in him for the decisions that he was going to make to keep us all safe. God wants us to trust and believe in Him just like Mike did in my Dad. God’s understanding and knowledge is far above ours and His decisions for our lives are always in our best interest. My brother trusted our Dad with the lives of everyone in our vehicle that night and that’s the kind of trust that God wants us to have in Him.
We can only develop that kind of trust in God when we are focusing on Him and His words of wisdom. If you are joining me through the book of Proverbs, we are reading Proverbs 4 today. I would love for you to share what verse or verses spoke to you today…in any readings that you did in your Bible today.