Gas canWhat kind of car do you drive? I drive a 2000 Honda Odyssey minivan. It has close to 275,000 miles on it and about as many stories.

I’ve driven it like a pickup truck up and down the mountain roads of north Georgia when we had a mountain cabin on Carter’s Lake. I’ve driven it to more little league baseball games, cheerleading practices, lacrosse games and football games than I can count. I’ve hauled students to and from Fellowship of Christian Athlete meetings and leadership camps for years. This van has been a part of our family story for fifteen years. I’ve logged a lot of miles and hours in the van. A few years ago I gave her a name… GG. There’s a long story behind that name. One day I may share it.

Yesterday, my son drove my van to work. As he was driving home, in the middle of Atlanta rush hour traffic I might add, the van just stopped. He was sitting in the middle of I-75. Fortunately for him, the traffic was practically at a standstill anyway, so no one hit him. He called us immediately to let us know what was going on before calling 911 and the tow truck.

I had mixed feelings. First, I wanted my son safe, but then I was hit by the reality that GG may have died. After 15 years of faithful service to our family, she may be no more. Now I knew I wasn’t far from having to buy a new car, but I wanted to do it on my terms. I wanted time to look, test drive, and pick a color. I didn’t want to have to settle for what was available at the time.

After lamenting a bit, I received a text from my son. He had news on the van. The fate of GG was contained in five simple words.

It ran out of gas.”

I had to laugh out loud. That’s all. GG just needed gas. She was fine. She would see the light of another day. My husband drove to where my son was with a gas can and filled the van up enough to get it to a gas station and then they drove home safe and sound.

Has that ever happened to you? Have you ever run out of gas? Oh, I don’t mean your car… I mean you personally. You see, we were not created to run indefinitely anymore than GG. We need to be filled up in order to run.

Just like God made us to need food every day to thrive, He also created us to need to be filled spiritually on a regular bases to run properly. Genesis 1:26 tells us we’re created in the image of God. Even Jesus new the importance of being filled daily when He walked the earth. Mark 1:35 says,

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.”

Jesus knew He needed to commune with the Father each day, to learn what He was to do that day and to be filled by the Holy Spirit to do it [John 5:19, Acts 1:8]. We need the same thing.

To fail to spend that time with the Lord puts us at risk of running out of gas.

We never know when it will happen. We could be in a dangerous place. We don’t get to choose when it happens anymore than my son got to choose where GG would run out of gas.

The safest thing to do in both situations is to remain full. Are you running on empty? Do you need to be filled? As they used to say back in the old days,

Fill ‘er up!”

**I will be taking next week off. I look forward to meeting you all back here on Tuesday, May 26th. Enjoy your week and your Memorial Day celebrations.