3 Ways to Maximize Your Commute Time This Week
Crank the music up, put windows down, and cruise along in the sunny sunshine. Sounds like a perfect drive in the car, right?
If you have a solitary drive (and good weather), this is the natural bent for most people. It was for me, too. However, I have recently learned that alone time in the car can provide some of the sweetest moments spent with Jesus. Whether it is a daily commute, a return from dropping the kids off at school, going to the grocery store, or simply on a drive—these moments can be incredibly impactful. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that one thing that has significantly changed my prayer life and my moments with Jesus is: driving. Here’s why…
I remember that in high school I could never turn the volume on the stereo up loud enough; I’d put my favorite CD in, crank (yes, my car you had to manually crank the windows down) my windows down, and start my twenty-minute drive to school. I was jamming in my front seat on country roads and I was living my best life. That same attitude still exists today, but it has changed from widows-down-jamming to music-off-talking-to-God.
So, what does that look like exactly? Do you literally talk out loud? Do you pray Scripture? Do you listen to Scripture? Do you listen to worship music? What does it look like for your time with Jesus in the car to be beneficial? My answer to all those questions is “yes.” All of those things are helpful and important; they will also look different for all people.
By way of example, here are a few ways I talk to God during my drive to work:
Talk to God
It is interested how much has changed in my life in the past seven years. I have gotten married, moved four times, had three children—just to name a few changes. Additionally, my perception of prayer and time alone with Jesus has shifted as well.
Now, when I get in the car to drive to work and it’s silent, a rare occasion having three children, that’s when I get to talk to Jesus. Most days it looks like talking to God about my day, praying over the things I have ahead of me, asking God for help, and seeking wisdom. It also just includes talking literally out loud to God.
Come to think of it, it probably looks as if someone is literally sitting right next to me in the car with how the conversation is going. And that is actually how I like to think about it. Jesus is in the passenger seat driving to work with me. I have heard it said that if you want to get to know someone, spend some windshield time with them. That is my vision for my commute.
I often spend my time during my commute singing worship songs, typically on repeat. A song we sing often in my home lately has been “Raise a Hallelujah.” I sing that song on repeat—proclaiming worship to our God. But I don’t just worship through singing. I look at the trees changing color and I thank him for that. Looking at the beauty in creation while driving can be a great mindset and a worshipful moment to have while driving.
Silence Is Okay
We often feel this need to fill the silence. As a society we hate silence. We feel this need to fill the void with something that doesn’t allow us to slow down and listen. I’ll be the first to admit, I love a crowd, I love energy, I love filling the void with singing and dancing. However, I have found that silence is okay; and not only is it okay, but it is also good. I have spent some commutes in silence—just listening and asking the question, “Lord what do you have for me?”
I have multiple routes I can take to work. One is a long way and the other is a quick way. I know that if I need silence and if I need to listen, I will take the long way to work. It is a quiet and restful drive. My pace is slower, and that allows me to listen.
Not everything works the first time. With that in mind, I challenge you to just try it.
Turn off the talk radio, turn off the newest pop song, turn off ESPN, and just try it. It might not look the same for you as it does for me, but I do believe it will impact your faith. I know that my daily commute has become a special time for me to commune with God. I love my commute and I love that I get to share it with my God.