Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. John 14:1-3 KJV
I always loved owning a pick-up truck, but that blessing brings with it the fringe benefit of being asked to help every time one of your friends moves. So on a chilly winter day, as I was stacking as many boxes, bags and other assorted things into my truck as possible I wondered again why non-truck owners assume that pick-ups are capable of hauling living room sets, refrigerators and washing machines all in the same load. By the third trip I was just hoping we were on the last run when we got around to some final boxes. To her credit, our friend Susan, had already transported her dog, a couple of cats and a fish tank in her car. But along with her last boxes were two large cages with her parrots. “Can they ride up front with you?” Susan asked me as I started carrying out the first.
“I don’t know, I think there is only room for one.” I wearily answered. So after plopping bird #1 on the passenger seat and buckling him in, I proceed to wedge bird #2 in between boxes in back and covering him carefully with a blanket. “He’ll be fine! ” I assured her with an unconvincing smile. Ten miles down the road I was hoping my words of comfort would be true as the temperature of Northeastern Pennsylvania in December is a bit lower than their native Brazil. Parrot #1 who rode up front dozed off in the warm cab and napped most the way to his new home. But as I pulled in front of Susan’s new place I was just hoping that Parrot #2 was still alive. As quickly as I could I jumped out, unlashed his cage, and gently carried him into the house. When we pulled back the blanket, thankfully we discovered that our parrot was fine, but cringing in silence, fearfully looking around, wondering what the heck just happened!
Those feathered friends reminded me of my own journey with Jesus. Unlike myself, Jesus has plenty of room for me to ride up front in his cab. If I choose, I can journey close by His side, can listen to His voice, and leave the driving to Him. But for all kinds of different reasons there are times when I decide to ride in the back. I am still in the same truck headed in the same destination, but on those trips I am missing the joy of traveling close to Jesus. I don’t need to be trembling at every sound and frozen in fear till the moment God pulls back the blanket in heaven. He has room up front for everyone who knows Him as Lord and Savior, which is why He said, “Don’t let your heart be troubled.” He has given us all the privilege of asking, “Father, I believe in you and love you with all my heart. Can I ride with You today?” He is delighted to carry every one of us, up front and close by His side!