Life on the road as a trucker is hard. It’s hard on your health. It’s hard on your marriage. It’s hard on your kids. It’s especially hard on your relationship with God. Only by careful, alert management of our time and resources, can we keep our health, marriage, and family.
Our spiritual health must also be guarded and protected. There’s an old adage, ‘you are what you eat’. I would add to that. You are what you hear. You are what you see. You are what you do.
As a driver, I have many hours every day that I must choose what I will fill my mind with. Will I listen to music? Talk radio? News? Nothing? I have found a better way, a way that builds my mind and heart in God and not in the way of the world, a way to know God better in the solitude of a truck:
- Worship & Pray
- Listen & Learn
I know, that sounds basic, even trite. But until I made a plan and started doing it, I was stuck in the rut of complacency and lazy habits.(I still fall back into those too often!)
Worship & Pray
I have learned that when I take time each day, even several times a day, to focus on God, to acknowledge His worth-ness, to thank Him for all He’s done, and to praise His goodness, that my life goes better. Yes, the difficulties of life still happen, but somehow they don’t bother me as much. By scheduling a set time each day ( I set alarms on my phone to remind me) I remind myself in the busyness of life to shift my focus back to Him.
I have several tools that I use to help me respond to Him. Drawing from some of the oldest practices of the church, I use the daily worship routine or Orders. Northumbria Monastery has a daily feed that I follow as well as a feed from the Episcopal church.
I’ve had several people question my use of these, asking if they aren’t just rote prayers and therefore lacking in any real substance. Any worship or prayer has the tendency to become rote and devoid of meaning; even reading scripture can become meaningless. The answer is to focus on the words as I am speaking therm, making sure I am speaking therm to God. When I drift, I start over.
Listen & Learn
The biggest part of my day is spent listening and learning and thinking. I spend about an equal amount of time listening to scripture, Christian and classic fiction, Christian non fiction, along with some preaching thrown in.
One of the greatest joys this past year has been to rediscover a love for the Bible. As I have listened to it as a whole, not just reading it in bits and pieces, I have found a cohesiveness that I have never seen before.
Listening to books is different than reading in that it seems easier to picture what the author is saying. It’s like listening to a friend.
If you are stuck in a rut of spiritual complacency I highly recommend that you take a look at some of these tools that I use and implement your own spiritual growth plan.
Daily worship (Orders) apps. Orders are one way to regularly focus on God in personal worship.
Helps you remember those you are praying for.
Lots of good Christian music.
The bible in many versions and hundreds of daily devotions.
Daily Bible readings and portal to many radio teaching ministries.
Many different Bible versions and hundreds of study helps available for purchase. Best study app for the droid.
General purpose flashcard app. Useful for learning and rehearsing memory verses.
Good Christian audiobooks for purchase and download as mp3 files. Save them on a thumb drive and play them through an FM transmitter to your radio. Wait for their twice yearly sale and get the bigger books including Bibles really cheap.
I group 4-6 hour chunks of scripture into folders, then put therm on the thumb drive interspersed with fiction and non fiction books…bible, fiction, bible, non fiction, etc.
English Standard Version (ESV) Bible
Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis
Classic Christianity, Bob George