“Dad,” my daughter sounded worried over the phone, “I hate to tell you this because I know you just checked, but my brake pedal just went to the floor when I was on the expressway.”
This kind of thing did not use to be a problem. As a former ASE certified service technician, I had always been able to repair the family cars, usually cheaper and faster than a local shop. But now my girl’s life was in danger because I had missed a critical diagnosis on her last visit. Not only that, but she was five hours away in a big city. What would have been a $300 job at home became a $750 repair bill. It stung my ego because I had missed the warning signs, but I was happy to pay it to make sure she was safe.
That mistake reminded me of a spiritual lesson from King Solomon that might save us all a lot of heartaches if we can hear it.
Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life. (Proverbs 4:23 NKJ).
For many years, General Motors products equipped with disc brakes had “squeakers.” Squeakers are small flat wear indicators made of flimsy spring steel attached to one end of each inner disc brake pad in a set. When the pad wears down to within a few hundredths of an inch of the backing plate, the squeaker contacts the rotating disc and emits a high pitched squeal. When you hear the squeak, you know it’s time to replace the brake pads. If you don’t, you’ll soon have the stopping power of a greased bowling ball, and a simple $150 repair can rapidly become a $750 repair or worse, a car wreck.
King Solomon’s admonition, along with many other verses in Scripture, is a reminder to pay attention to the state of our hearts, to listen to our spiritual squeakers. They’re warning us of little problems that can become big ones in a hurry. But they aren’t quite as noticeable as the ones GM uses, so I’ve listed a few below.
You know your heart is squeaking:
- When gossip is easy, and prayer is hard.
- When you’re spouse is annoying, but your colleague is alluring.
- When conflict makes more sense than reconciliation.
- When vengeance seems more logical than forbearance.
- When fear and foreboding replace faith and courage.
- When lust looks lovely, and purity seems pathetic.
- When devotions are dull, but distractions are dynamic.
We could go on, but I’m sure you get the picture.
Listen to your spiritual squeakers. Put the brakes on runaway desires and ask God, “What’s missing? Where do I need a little soul maintenance? What has dulled my relationship with Jesus Christ and made me insensitive to his warnings?” He’ll help you replace the worn-out parts and keep your spirit healthy for the long haul.
 1 Timothy 4:16a; 1 Thessalonians 5:6; 1 Peter 5:8;