Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. – (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV)
I stopped at the Sideling Hill Rest Area Monday on the Pennsylvania Turnpike. My ride up to that point had been somewhat difficult. First, I was tired and was stopping in part, just to close my eyes so that my drowziness would not create a fatality. Secondly, the Turnpike had been literally jammed with cars either racing home from Grandma’s house or heading to another holiday event. Cars traveling at high speeds, filled with baggage, presents both wrapped and unwrapped, the precious cargo of children with Dads grasping a tall cup of Starbucks in one hand as they navigated the various lanes and lane changes.
That reality had already drained me of much energy. It had also added new meaning to the counsel, “Pray without ceasing.”
On the door of the rest area building was a sign “This is a text free Turnpike.” They, of course, were not referring to a school of preaching that infects too much of the church. They were reminding people of the great hazards involved in texting while driving.
Congress is trying to pass legislation to making texting and driving a crime. The civil libertarians and the social networking junkies are already crying “Foul!”
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t text (and frankly annoyed by the degree to which people plug out the world while they text). I do, however, use a cell phone, email, and Facebook to communicate regularly. I just avoid driving while I am doing.
What intrigues me is our desire to remain constantly connected with friends, family, work, and sometimes complete strangers and yet our relatively inconsistent and insignificant communications with God.
For the Bible does teach us that there is one connection that should be constant. Paul challenges to pray without ceasing, be constantly aware of your connection with God and consistently in communication – listening or speaking – as we go through the days of our lives. It’s a communication that protects you in life instead of putting your life and the lives of others in peril.
And you can do it and still keep your thumbs on the wheel. (And please keep your eyes open if you are literally at the wheel.)