My dad was on a business trip to England. While he was there he was going to be attending the company’s Christmas party. When he arrived at the party, he spotted bumper cars. They were lined up in straight lines, which my dad thought was a bit odd. Nevertheless, he climbed in with the rest of his coworkers. As soon as the game started he did a 180 turn and slammed into the car behind him. It was his boss’ car. No one else seemed to get the ‘bumper’ part of bumper cars, however. Some of them gave him scandalized looks. When the game ended and my dad got out, one of the older women came up to him and asked if he had seen the sign with all the rules. She pointed and my dad glanced up at it. It read: “Dodge Em’s.” It would seem that in England, bumper cars is exactly the opposite as it is in our barbaric United States. 🙂 In England, the object was to avoid hitting anyone else’s bumper car…Dodge Em’. 🙂 Instead, you were to stay in your specific lane and not get in anyone’s way.
I’m not sure which version I’d prefer…what about you? I have to say that Dodge Em’s sounds a lot more tame and less exciting to me personally. I was listening to a sermon recently, however, that reminded me of my dad’s story. It was talking about roles. The pastor likened it to staying in our own lanes… not trying to jump the line and do another person’s job. It just doesn’t go well for anyone when we do that. As human beings, each of us has a number of specific roles that we were created to fill, be it as a male or a female, a parent, spouse or child, a leader, one under authority, or more. But in our world today, so many people are rejecting those beautiful, God-given roles and trying to fit into something else. Leaders don’t lead, and those who weren’t meant to lead try to. Children disobey, dishonor, and rebel against their parents, and parents often don’t parent them, train them…or they aren’t even there! We all try to flip our “cars” 180 degrees, and chaos ensues, with one person slamming against another…which is not how God created it to be!
This has been a recurring topic in my life for many years…this sermon, a book I recently read called Girl Defined by Kristin Clark and Bethany Baird, and many discussions at the dinner table. Maybe you’ve been wondering about the same topics I have. I challenge you to evaluate and pray through what your life roles should be and if you are fulfilling them correctly. God has given us each roles. That isn’t the question…the question is if we will choose to live in them. It’s not restricting to live in them, like our world tries to say, but rather freeing! God has given us our roles as gifts. Wouldn’t you rather your life and relationships go smoothly, rather than being jerked and banged around? Maybe the banging around looks fun at first, but it isn’t really. I mean, just think about how easy it is to bite your tongue! 😉
Your sister in Christ,