Prayer – The Steering Wheel or a Spare Tire? Greg Albrecht

Corrie Ten Boom once asked, “Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire?” When she compared prayer to a steering wheel, I’m relatively certain that Corrie Ten Boom didn’t know anything about a modern GPS system—the navigational system many people have in their cars today.

As you probably know, GPS stands for Global Positioning System. It’s a radio navigation system that allows land, sea and airborne users to determine their exact position. It relies on 24 satellites in orbit above the earth—positioned in such a way that four of them will always be above the horizon, anywhere on the earth.

A GPS receiver, like the ones many people have in their cars, has a computer that receives bearings from three of those four satellites and then triangulates its own position—normally accurate within 10-15 feet.

The GPS receiver often includes a display screen showing a map, giving the result of the signals received by the onboard computer. Like so much of the technology available to us today, a perfect understanding of how the GPS system works is not required in order for someone to utilize and benefit from it.

Practically, in one of its most basic uses, a GPS system in a car or truck enables the driver to input the desired destination into the onboard computer, and then the GPS system, via information from satellites, provides audio directions as the vehicle moves down the road.

A disembodied, computer-generated voice gives the driver instructions about where to turn the steering wheel so that the driver can successfully arrive at his/her destination.

One of the spiritual truths about an analogy between a GPS system and prayer is that the necessary direction and guidance comes to us from above.

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