One of the sure signs I’m not in a good place with Jesus is when I feel myself becoming an angry driver – I’m serious.
When everyone in the world needs to get out of the way, when every light should be green, when my fingers instinctively reach for the horn just because somebody slowed down – there’s no love in the way I drive. But it doesn’t stop there.
Once I get home, I bulldoze past my family on the way upstairs to change clothes; I raise my voice too easily when I come back downstairs and my daughters are fighting; and I get annoyed that I have to do the dishes after dinner.
I pray and ask God to “give me patience,” but He shrugs off my attempt to turn Him into a magical prayer genie. Instead, He puts strong, quiet pressure on my prideful heart. And if I will listen, He begins teaching me, correcting me, and saying something like:
These cars are not your problem; your daughters are not your problem; dirty dishes are not your problem – you are your problem. I’m allowing these frustrations into your life to put the pressure on you, to squeeze out the toxic juice that tastes a whole lot like a man who thinks he ought to be lord over his little universe. Grow up, son, and live the life of a servant who thinks of others as better than himself (Phil. 2:3).
Quite frankly, I’d prefer instant answers to my magical prayers for spiritual maturity, but God refuses, and this is why: He has no interest in helping me hide my need for Him.