I was pumping gas this morning and the truck next to me drew my attention with half a dozen bumper stickers. I understand that is the point of bumper stickers, so good job!
The stickers varied. The biggest one was actually the website for the dealership that sold the truck. Those stickers come free with the truck. I guess dealers assume that you would love to advertise for them for free. I am always surprised when people don’t remove those immediately or even insist that the dealer remove them before driving off the lot.
I have one sticker on the rear window of both of my family vehicles. It is an outline of the Great Lakes. I am from Michigan, and just seeing the shape of those lakes reminds me of good times and a happy life. My wife and kids have had some very nice vacations on the Great Lakes so the stickers have meaning to all of us.
There were a few stickers on this truck at the gas station that I had no idea what they were about. There was sticker logo of a gun manufacturer. There was also a YETI sticker from a water bottle or a cooler. And in the middle of the cluster of stickers was a nice looking cross. It was clearly shaped and styled to represent the Christian symbol of Jesus.
I am in favor of the Jesus and a fan of the cross.
So I was making assumptions about the driver of this truck as I looked over his collection of stickers. I guess he likes cool/expensive water bottles. I guess he had a favorable experience with his auto dealer. I assume that this person is a gun owner. And I assume that he is some level of a believer in Jesus.
There was no rhyme or reason (that I could see) as to the placement or any type of ranking of these interests of his. So I don’t know which of those things he would most identify with or which he would claim first. That is actually what bothered me about this sticker collection.
I don’t think that Jesus is supposed to be on any lists of hobbies or interests. I don’t think that He has offered us life and salvation as an ala carte choice to add to our plate at the buffet line.
Jesus did say to take up your cross daily. I assume that he would be fine with a cross bumper sticker. I just suspect that he would be bothered by a cross crowded among arbitrary things like logos of bands and brands and cartoon characters that we enjoy.
I don’t mean to actually call into question the level of spiritual commitment of the guy at the gas station. It’s really just a bumper sticker. But I wanted to ask you to reflect for a moment on what priorities and values you are sharing with people around you. Would the people who know you list Christian as one of many things about you? Would they say that Jesus was your number one priority and value or even your best friend?
Proverbs 18:24 tells us that there is one friend who sticks closer than a brother. And that friend is Jesus.
Jeremy Alger is the pastor of the New Cumberland Church of the Nazarene. They meet in person and online every Sunday. For more information please visit www.newcumberlandnazarene.com