The woman said to the serpent…God did say, 'You must not eat the fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the garden. Do not even touch it. If you do, you will die.'" "You can be sure that you won't die," the serpent said to the woman… (Genesis 3:2-6 NIrV)
When I was early in my years at college, I used to carpool with a group of friends. We all lived off campus, so it made sense to save the precious gas-money in this way.
One day, it was my turn to drive. I was sporting a styling 1963 Plymouth Valiant with a push-button transmission. I really liked that car. There were four of us riding together and I was navigating the highway through downtown Cincinnati to make it over the bridge into northern Kentucky where our school was located. It was cloudy and raining pretty hard, making visibility much lower than normal.
Then it happened. BOOM! The whole car shook and it took a second for all of us to realize what had happened. I hit a pothole...a big one. It was filled with water, so the rain had hidden it from my sight. Not only that, but the pothole was bordered on one side by a metal expansion bar in the road. My rear tire was sliced cleanly across the entire tread in one instant. Before I could react, the metal rim of my tire hit the concrete, the car began spinning, and we ended up only a couple feet from the concrete divider facing in the opposite direction of the flow of traffic. The car behind us was able to slow down and stop only inches away from our front bumper.
Hazard lights were turned on. Police were called and arrived. I changed a tire in the rain. The policeman stopped traffic in three lanes when we were ready to go, allowing us to turn the car around in the right direction. We went on our way. All in all, we were grateful for the outcome. It could have been much worse!
Potholes can do that, you know. They can stop you in your tracks. They can disrupt your whole day. They can become the focus of your attention, frighten you, hurt you, and even take your life and the lives of those around you. It's really better to avoid potholes altogether.
God has a different name for potholes: temptation. You see, God doesn't want our attention focused away from Him. He doesn't want us to be frightened, hurt, or to die. He warns us about the potholes in life so that we can avoid them. Then it's up to us. After all, we are in the driver's seat.