I have a kinship with Michael Slaughter. The more I read, the more I think I’d love to have a cup of coffee with him sometime. He writes in his book his long-time desire to have a motorcycle and learn how to drive it. Since he was a teenager, which is exactly like me! He saved for 10 years to buy a 2005 Harley Davidson Road King Custom (SWEET bike!). As I have just recently purchased a bike (not a Harley – but hoping one day!!!) and as I continue learning how to drive it, I appreciated Michael’s comparison. Driving a bike is challenging and I have a lot of respect for the inherent danger that comes along with it! It’s exhilarating, but scary :).
He went on in his book to compare driving a motorcycle to becoming a disciple for Christ. This is VERY cool so I had to share – this is found on page 63 of his book:
You need to take into account approximately 600 factors while driving an automobile, many of which become second nature. On a motorcycle, however, there are 2,400 factors that a biker needs to take into account, and they better not become second nature. Bikers use the acronym SEE (search, evaluate, execute) as the checklist for all of these risk factors. These same three practices can ensure the faithful navigation and completion of Christ’s mission as a disciple.
Search – A biker is always looking at the road about twelve seconds ahead. Where are the cavernous potholes, gravel, or wet leaves that mean little when driving a car but can send a biker over the handlebars? How will you approach the curve? These are all things that the driver of an automobile may not consciously see, but they can mean serious injury or even death for the biker if he or she is not focused on the road ahead. The disciple is always seeking the wisdom of God’s word, listening to the intuitive voice of the Spirit and pursuing the wise counsel of spiritual mentor-coaches to determine how to navigate the road ahead. They seek first God’s perspective on everything from money to marriage, understanding the world, and our responsibility to it. You need to know where God wants you to be tomorrow to determine your course of action today. What you do today becomes the fruit of your life tomorrow. Vision is having a clear picture of God’s preferred future and then acting on it!
Evaluate – When biking, I want to have a proactive plan of action before I get to the point of challenge in the road ahead. Discipleship is a commitment to self-awareness. Those who participate in a twelve-step recovery program understand the importance of taking a continual moral and spiritual inventory. Disciples need to honestly evaluate their senses of identity, morality, and mission to ensure they are staying true to God’s call. Identifying fellow disciples who will offer honest evaluation is also important.
Execute– James reminds us that we are blessed in what we do, not by what we merely hear or intellectually believe: “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says” (1:22). The majority of folk have the “want to” but few have the “work to.” Life is not measured in our words; life happens in action. Jesus’ invitation to the disciples was not first to believe in him but to follow him. Faith doesn’t precede the journey; it grows out of the journey. Disciples have made the commitment to the rigors of the daily journey with Jesus.