Have you ever noticed that when you are driving, you have a lot of time to think about things? It seems that “drive time” is time that we lose in the hurry and scurry of the day. My default setting is to turn on the radio and listen to music, sports or talk radio. While some of the things I listen to really build me up, most of the “car time” background noise really is not something that helps me learn, grow or even think about good things.
One way that I have found focus in the midst of a busy day is to reclaim and redeem time while I am driving. As the dad of three kids, I figure I spend at least an hour of time most days driving. Half of the drive time is time alone. So, what I have been trying to do is turn off the radio and pray. I pray for all sorts of people in my life, for my day, for things that are coming up. It isn’t a very organized prayer time, really scattered (kind of how my brain can work). If it comes to mind in those quiet moments, I bring it before God and ask for His favor, help, encouragement, perspective and provision.
On Tuesday I was driving down East 1st avenue when I found myself praying for someone who does ministry in our city. As I prayed a short prayer about what I knew was going on in his life, a picture flashed across my mind. It was a picture of this person coaching another leader, and a heavy issue being wrestled with. It also felt like my friend needed to be very bold in suggesting a course of action that would be difficult.
These thoughts seemed to come out of nowhere, and it occurred to me, maybe God was showing me something to pray for. So, I prayed for my friend to have courage, strength and the ability to give the direction he needed to give to a person I didn’t know existed or not. After the short prayer I sent a quick text message explaining what I had felt as I prayed for him. After I sent the message, it felt like I had been obedient to share what I felt, then moved on with my day.
Yesterday (Wednesday) I received a message back explaining that at the moment that text message arrived, my friend was coaching another Christian leader… who had to make a bold stand to one of his key leaders. Wow! It was just like that thought which had run through my mind. As it turns out, the Lord was calling me to pray, and share with my friend what I was praying so he would be encouraged and know that God was really working in and through the ministry he is giving his life to.
While I have had other thoughts run through my mind that didn’t seem to be the Lord, I have never tried to bless someone else and felt like it was in vain. We are all learning how to discern God’s voice from our own voice and all the other competing voices in our lives. Even when I “miss” and it’s not God giving me that thought, I feel as if people are gracious and still listen to me. They still appreciate the fact that I’ve prayed God’s blessing over them. I think it’s okay to be a little weird.
So, maybe it’s time to turn the radio down, pray, and share the fleeting thoughts you have with others! Who knows, it might just make your day and bless another.