I live in a golf cart community. Many people here live life at somewhere between 16 and 20 miles per hour, passing each other with a friendly wave, stopping to help when someone is lost, and taking in the sights and sounds of the birds at the ponds or the flowers along the path. It’s a very pleasant way to move around and the pace is worth noting because something about this more intentional travel mode, creates opportunity to be present in the moment, more fully available to the passing outside world. After all, you’re totally exposed on a balmy day, getting a wind in your hair, sun on your face experience.
I’ve enjoyed the golf cart mode more than I imagined I would. I was so used to jumping into my car to go to the local market, or visit a friend for coffee, or find my favorite mall, but now that’s changed. It’s not unlike the horse and carriage life of the Amish. It’s simpler, freer!
If you have an electric cart like I do, you have to keep it plugged in when you’re not using it. It will go about sixty miles on one charge, but after you’ve been out and about you need to plug it in again so it’s ready for the next time. You need to switch the little lever from run back to tow, so it is charged to the max. Being me, I can’t help seeing the metaphor that comes to mind when I consider my struggles to keep plugged in to the Creator of the Universe.
I was used to the mode of jumping into my car any time and going wherever I wanted as long as the car was fueled and maintained. But now, I imagine this little golf cart to be somewhat analogous to my relationship with God. If I’m more aware of being plugged in, if I keep it fully charged, I can go out and discover new paths and interesting opportunities and the little surprises and treasures God might have for me in the world. If I change the lever from tow to run, I can run for a good while seemingly on my own. Fortunately, the charge runs out and I have to plug it in again, have to be “towed” if you will, carried along by something greater than myself, something bigger. Only after that refueling, am I ready to go again.
I like this image. I like the idea that I don’t just go off every day on my own steam, but every time I go out in this little electric cart, I’m reminded that first I better be plugged in, better know where the energy comes from that keeps me moving. I like knowing that now I can run just far enough to do all that is being asked of me, enough for one day, enough for that moment. And when I come home, I simply plug in again. It’s a great system…not unlike what God would have me do in my connection with Him. The sights are always more beautiful and the ride smoother when I do that very thing. In fact, I know for sure, I simply have to take that one action…plug into the source…and I’m free to roam another day. Same with you, I think! Just encouraging you to stay plugged in as well.