Getting to the Root of the Problem
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man (or woman) of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy NIV)
Friend to Friend
Several years ago, I owned a car that continually overheated. The first time I saw the little red needle pointing to the big H on the dashboard, I assumed it meant the car was hot. It was in the middle of August and frankly, I was hot too, so I wasn’t terribly alarmed. I decided to mosey on down to the dealership about twelve miles away to have it checked out. Big mistake.
After about a minute or so, steam began billowing from under the hood, the engine began knocking angrily, and the little engine that could, decided it couldn’t any longer. It died in the middle of a busy intersection on a Friday afternoon in traffic. The car was towed to the dealership where the mechanic delivered the unfortunate news:
“Mrs. Jaynes, you see that needle that is pointing to the ‘H’?” the repairman asked. “That means that the engine is runnin’ hot. When you see that, you’ve got to stop right away. Since you kept goin’, you burned up your engine. It’s a goner. You’ll have to get a new one.”
“That sounds expensive,” I moaned.
“Oh, it’ll be about four thousand dollars,” he answered, while continuing to poke around under the hood.
Four thousand dollars! And all because I didn’t stop the car when it overheated…all because I didn’t heed the warning signs. It was a painful and costly lesson.
The mechanic installed a new engine, and you can imagine my alarm when I noticed that little red needle pointing to H a few weeks later. This time, I stopped right away. Once again, my car was towed to the dealership. Once again, they made adjustments, gave reassurances, and sent me on my way.
Over the following weeks, my car overheated three times. Each time, it was towed to the shop and the mechanic made adjustments. Finally, I said, “No more.” I got rid of the car.
The trouble was, the mechanic never fixed the cause of the problem, but only tinkered with the symptoms. He fixed first one thing and then another, but never got to the root of the problem to find out why the car was overheating in the first place.
How like us. We continue to tinker, fixing one flaw and then another, but never getting to the root of the problem. Many times when reading the Bible, we want the “how to-s” without the “why for-s.” In this age of instant messaging, fax machines, and microwave cooking, we want a quick fix without the understanding the deep truths of scripture. We say, “Just tell me what to do and I’ll do it.” “Give me a ten step program and I’ll check off the steps one by one.” But in order to experience the ultimate makeover and lasting change – we must begin with ultimate truth.
I hope you’ll join me in committing to learning the ultimate truth in God’s Word. When we dig deep into Scripture, we discover the root cause of our problems and God’s amazing solutions.
Dear Lord, I have been tinkering with my problems long enough. My hot button has gone off more times than I care to admit. Would you please show me the root cause of this problem? You are the Heavenly mechanic and my engine is in need of repair. I open my hood (heart) to You and pray that you will help me run like a well-Holy Spirit - oiled machine.
In Jesus’ Name,
Now It’s Your Turn
- When is the last time you emotion meter hit H for Hot?
- What was the problem?
- Now look at your answer. Did you blame it on someone else? If so, you are tinkering, tinkering, tinkering. (I love you, girlfriend.)
- Think…pray…now answer the question again. What was the problem?
More from the Girlfriends
If you have been tinkering with the problems in your life and want to know more about the ultimate truth that will set you free, see Experience the Ultimate Makeover: Discovering God’s Transforming Power by Sharon Jaynes.
Girlfriends in God
Matthews, NC 28106
Originally published Friday, 02 March 2007.