Saturday, May 10, 2014

Nobody likes a back seat driver but everybody needs one.  I can't count the number of times I've been driving down the road lost in the world of my own thoughts or distracted by something outside or inside the vehicle only to be shocked back into focus by the loud, firm voice of my wife saying "KENNETH"! 

When Jeanie says my name with this tone of voice I know she's not just seeking my attention but she's wanting me to get my attention back on the road I'm driving on because if I don't I'm about to have an accident.

It's funny because my first reaction is always "why are you saying my name that way, with that tone of voice?"  Or in other words I'm telling her, "hey I got this what's the problem!  I'm in control here, I have my hands on the steering wheel and everything is okay!" When in reality everything wasn't okay.  I was distracted and about to run off the road or head on into another vehicle and my wife (my back seat driver) saved my life and possibly many others. 

Because of my pride and male ego I'm ashamed to say there are times I'd even get angry with Jeanie for correcting my driving.  Now how crazy is that! My back seat driver just saved our lives and I'm getting angry because she brought attention to my distraction that was about to cause an accident!  Can somebody say "foolish!" 

Then when I finally humble myself I have to admit that I needed my "back seat driver."  I had lost focus and wasn't paying attention to the direction I was going but she could see what I couldn't see because I was distracted!  And I'm thankful that she had the courage to speak up and speak firm and loud because it probably saved both of our lives! 

The truth is we all need a few "back seat drivers" in our lives.  Not just when I'm driving down the road in a car but in every aspect of life.  I need a few people close to me who can see what I can't see and are willing to speak loud and firm to keep me from running off in the "ditch" or "head on" into another vehicle.  When these tragedies happen it harms not only me but those connected to me as well. 

Just in the last month I've heard reports of two mega church pastors who've  had "head on collisions" in their ministries.  They both had to resign due to moral failures.  My earnest prayer is that their families and ministries be healed and restored but I have to wonder if either of these men had "back seat drivers" in their lives?  People in their inner circle they were accountable to and that could speak loudly and firmly to them. 

I think you can get the message  without me going in any other details.  So I just have to ask you, who are your "back seat drivers?"  Are they in the vehicle with you and do they have the authority to speak loud and firm to you? 

In this season that Jeanie and I are dreaming.......again I can tell you that I've been far more focused on our "back seat drivers" (inner circle) than I ever have in the history of our ministry.  I have friends close to me that love me and want to see God's best for our family and ministry that have permission to speak into our lives and bring correction if needed.  And please don't get me wrong, they're not just in the vehicle to correct my driving.  These are people I'm in relationship with.  We enjoy doing life together.  Let me say it this way. We enjoy just going for a ride in the vehicle.

In fact most of the time we can just go for a drive and enjoy the ride.  I love sharing life with my family and friends.  But I'm so thankful for the family and friends that I've designated as "back seat drivers!"  They sure have kept me from a lot of accidents! 

 "Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.  Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone?  A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken." (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)

Enjoying the ride,

Ken Woolf