Jesus replied, “You are in error because you do not know the power of God.” – Matthew 22:29 (NIV)
A few years ago at a car rental agency, having requested a “standard” size car, I was given the keys to a Dodge Charger. I don’t know cars at all, so to me it was just another car. I was a little annoyed that it only had two doors.
I didn’t realize that this was what is called a “muscle car,” until I got on the entrance ramp to the highway, where I discovered that the slightest pressure on the gas was all it took to send me flying past all the other cars in my way. Within seconds I was out in front of four lanes of traffic, watching in amazement as everyone else receded in my rear view mirror.
I have always been a nervous highway driver. Now I understood why. I’d been undersupplied with cylinders!
All of my driving life I’d thought people who blasted past me on the highway were jerks and jackasses. But after driving the Charger in the fast lane for a minute or two, I didn’t think of myself as a jerk or a jackass.
No, I began to think of my car—and by extension, myself—as superior to the other cars, whose pitifully slow progress now seemed to me to be a failure on their part, instead of just a lack of the kind of cylinders I temporarily had. For the first time in my life, I could pass anyone I wanted to without triple-checking my mirrors. I felt god-like.
And that reminded me of one of the top reasons for believing in God. Power doesn’t go to God’s head. Perhaps we worship God because we’re so impressed by power, strength, and influence used only for good. It seems like a miracle.
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might. You alone are holy, you alone would drive a muscle car in the slow lane, and wave at the rest of us passing you. Amen.
Christina Villa is Philanthropy/Communications Consultant at The Pension Boards-United Church of Christ, New York, NY.