You Can't Run a Car on Mustard

“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10

So the day has come. You got your driver’s license. Needless to say, you’re particularly excited to take the car out, but the tank is low on fuel. Since you don’t have any gasoline on hand, you shuffle through the pantry and grab a huge squeeze bottle of mustard.

Wait. What? Mustard? That’s ridiculous. I imagine your dad might be a little upset if you poured mustard in his gas tank because not only will the car not run on mustard, but it will probably ruin the engine. Cars weren’t made for mustard; they were made for gas. They’ll only run if they are used according to their design. But, of course, everyone knows this.

C. S. Lewis (you know, the guy who thought up Narnia) said, “A car is made to run on petrol (remember, he’s British), and it would not run properly on anything else. Now God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on. There is no other. That is why it is no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.”

How would you finish this sentence: “I would be happy if I only had ______________.” This is one of the ways we talk to ourselves, right? We think that we’ll find happiness if we make certain grades, or if certain people want to be our friends, or maybe if our nose was just a little smaller. Some of us (if we’re honest) think about these things ALL THE TIME. Some people chase after the thing they want to fill the blank with their whole lives.

But here’s the thing, you were created by God and for God. He is the source of your life, and you will only find joy, happiness, rest and peace by looking to Him. As Lewis said, “God cannot give us happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there.” Saint Augustine put it this way, “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.”

It’s a restless feeling, looking for happiness and peace in your outfit, or how smart you are, or how much money you have. They’re never quite enough, are they? What have you told yourself today about what will make you happy? Remember, we’re all talking to ourselves…we’re all telling ourselves something. Are you trying to run your car on mustard?

Today the One who made you and knows everything about you, invites you to come and put your trust in Him. He invites you to come and rest…to trust Him with your life, your future, your happiness.

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