As we drive down the interstate, my daughter sits in the backseat. Her only concern is what level she’s gotten to on the Angry Birds game on my phone.

She doesn’t realize what a responsibility it is to be in the driver’s seat. I’m not trying to wage a war between pigs and birds – I’m trying to monitor road conditions, car conditions, and the condition of the drivers around me, all while wearing the weight of my daily concerns on my shoulders.

It isn’t her job right now to be in charge. At this point in her life, I’m in control of many of her life’s decisions and can protect her, somewhat, from the ugliness of the world around her.

One day, though, it will be her turn to get behind the wheel of her life. To get there, she has to be prepared. I’d never take my 10-year-old and put her in the front seat, expecting her to be able to control a vehicle and navigate a route. That would be foolishness. First, she’ll have to live a little longer so she can obtain some “life experience” and decision-making skills. She’ll have to study the written rules of the road. And, she’ll have to prove that she is adept at operating the car before she’s allowed that privilege.

In the same way, God has plans for us that stretch beyond where we are right now. But He knows we aren’t ready quite yet. We have to get some “life” under our belts. We have to study His rules of the road (the Bible): line upon line, precept upon precept, gradually building our faith and our knowledge of Him. And, we’ll have to pass some tests to prove we’ll be able to handle the job He’s placing before us.

Would it be easier to sit in the back seat playing games? Of course it would. But it won’t be nearly as rewarding as getting where He wants us to be. The destination will be worth the work!