Interpretation is not the same as the Truth.
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I learned to drive in Los Angeles. Somehow I feel this entitles me to be an expert in things like merging into traffic. In every city I’ve lived, merging seems to be one of the most controversial aspects of driving there is. To some, this sign means to watch out, drive slowly to the end of the merge lane, then look for an opening to get into the next lane. To another it means drive at a leisurely pace and then just move into the rest of traffic, they will alter their speed to compensate. I won’t tell you the “Los Angeles way” (the right way) since this is not a rant about driving but a devotional about following Jesus.
So the point here is that the merge sign does not come with an explanation attached. It is open to interpretation because we don’t carry our driver training manuals with us once we pass the driving test. We move into driving and develop our habits for better or worse, right or wrong. Often the longer we drive the more likely we would be to fail a driving test. There’s no reason to go back and read the manual.
Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
John 14:5-7 New International Version
Like the rules of the road, we who have been following Jesus can lose our bearings if we start assuming without returning to the Scripture on a regular basis. Maybe we assume that all Christians should/must/will share our political views. Maybe we assume that real followers of Jesus will participate in the types of clubs or activities that we do. The more serious our walk with God, the more important to keep the Manual at our fingertips.
Lord, help me not assume that my own interpretation is the right one. Help me to be open to hearing from You even if it contradicts what I think I already know.
Copyright photo and text David Brukiewa