Windshield Time

  • by Neil Downey

There was a July that I dubbed my month of travel logging a total of more than 3,600 miles of windshield time.  Yikes.

When I'm traveling with kids, driving long distances can swing from boredom to fun to chaos in mere seconds. But between iPods, laptops, DVD players and the radio, we found ourselves needing to be very intentional about pushing pause and having real conversations. Or even (gasp) silence.

Music, movies, caffeine and pistachios were acceptable (and even necessary) during the trek across Nebraska. But when driving through the Rockies, we needed to press pause and look around at the beauty.

When my wife and I forced our kids to turn off all their technology and just experience the beauty of God’s Creation, the hours of being stuck in a vehicle were quickly forgotten. We were awestruck. After several miles of driving over mountain passes, through deep canyons and alongside gorgeous rivers, our 8 year-old said, “Now THIS is nature!”

In some ways, our July excursions became a microcosm of our everyday life. Too much noise from electronics and fighting, whining and complaining, too many things on the to-do list, and too much stuff competing for our time and attention.

How do we press pause for a chunk of time? How do we find time to reflect on what’s important, to think clearly and communicate with God? How do we find a way to just experience God? Just like with windshield time, we’ve got to be intentional. Otherwise, we might miss out on some breathtaking God-moments.

What do you do to escape the chaos of life and spend time with God?