I have now been the owner of 9 different cars... I don't mean marital assets, these cars were just my own cars... My first car was a blue VW Beetle, it was a stick shift, which I feel is an important thing to note because driving a stick is an entirely different experience... Also in there was a convertible, a tiny SUV and 4 different glamorous minivans... Of all of those, my current car is my favorite.
I don't think it actually has to do with the car, I am pretty sure any of the previous 8 cars would have been just fine (except the little ones because lets be honest those are too cute for the 3 carseats I still have installed) The difference with this car? How it is used.
Sometimes I don't know how to describe it, the freedom I am living in... I am not free from responsibility, or obligation or paying my bills on time... In fact, the amount of responsibility on my shoulders now is much greater because I am 100% tasked with the upbringing of my children. No blame or burden can be placed on anyone else... It's not that I am lighter because life is easier, I am lighter because the burden of my sin and shame and guilt... those are GONE.
I lived my life never good enough... Straight A's in school? Not smart enough. Started college at age 15? Not driven enough. Modeled throughout my life? Not pretty enough. No matter what I did it was never enough... Did anyone ever tell me that? No, well, yes... I told myself that - I told myself that because I heard it whispered to myself all my life... "Anna, you will never be good enough." And you know what? That voice WAS RIGHT.... Anna in and of herself would never and could never be good enough... But it didn't stop me from trying all those years.
It's not that I am perfect now... I mean, lets be honest mom bod vs. 17 year old ballerina bod, not to mention all of my imperfections related to my lack of patience or bossy nature.... But something slowly blossomed in me... It started a few years ago, and then it was like a snowball... Once it gained momentum it just sorta rolled outside for all the world to see and now it has matured into a full blown tree with roots and a river continually flowing by.... This tree? This is what freedom looks like. Freedom from carrying the burden that is life, freedom from having to go it all alone, freedom from so believing that anger, bitterness, abuse - I must deserve them and it's all my fault because I could never be good enough... freedom from it all being about ME.
"because the essence of the gospel-humility Is not thinking more of myself
or thinking less of myself, it is thinking of myself less"... Timothy Keller
Wait, what does this have to do with my car?! Yeah, sorry - got sidetracked there... Here is the connection... I have found my car to be an amazing place to worship. If you stop by me at a stoplight you will see me with the windows down, the moon roof open, music blaring and me singing, dancing and probably raising a hand (don't worry 10 and 2 for driving moments)... and if my kids are with me, they will be doing the same, because the car has become a place of worship for our family.....
Maybe it's because when you have one parent and four kids to take places you end up spending more time in the car? Or maybe it's that we have added a school commute? Or maybe it's just because I have a new found love for the acoustics of the car... It just feels like we spend a lot of time in the car now - but we don't mind it, we treasure it actually...
Sometimes I look in the rearview mirror and all 4 of my children singing - sometimes with their eyes closed, sometimes holding hands with their sibling, sometimes my little introvert even has his hands raised and eyes closed just totally comfortable being in that moment of worship, in those moments I usually stop singing because my heart just about bursts with love for this life of ours, love that I am gifted with the treasures I have and love that we can fully and completely trust God for our future.
You don't have to step inside a church building to worship... You don't have to know all the words or sing perfectly in tune, you don't have to look a certain way or act a certain way... Worship is simply turning your attention on God and how amazing He is - praise Him for who He is and what He has done in your life.
Here are some samples of some songs we enjoy listening to in our car - I would love to hear what songs your family love - maybe the playlist can grow!
Here are my kiddos helping me clean out the car this evening, it has become our Friday tradition.