I Deserved the Traffic Ticket
Driving down a California freeway on a superbly beautiful day of fluffy clouds, I just felt very happy. My happiness pressed my foot against the accelerator as I didn’t see the Highway Patrolman until the red lights from his cruiser caused me to pull over to the side of the road.
He came up to my side of the car and asked me questions. Then I said, “I don’t expect you to not write a ticket but my husband will ask me if I told you that he’s a police officer in Huntington Beach.” I gave Larry’s name.
He didn’t smile as he walked back to his cruiser. I was getting a ticket and deserved it.
When he returned, he handed me my license and said, “Next time drive the speed limit.”
I melted in gratitude and said, “Thank you.”
Working my way back into traffic, I was surprised at my reaction. I drove below the speed limit. I wanted to try to find him and shout, “I’m so grateful, I want to obey the law. Thank you for your mercy!”
I’ve never forgotten that because it shouts to me of how growing more sanctified and obedient should come from gratitude for the mercy and grace God gives us. Our connection with Jesus’ saving death qualifies us to avoid the wrath and punishment for our sin that we deserve. And then out of strong gratitude that we have not received what we deserve, we say, “Look, Lord! I’m so grateful I want to show it by obeying you.”
This is excerpted from Never Ever Be the Same (Leafwood Publishers) which offers Christians hope that they can change their destructive behavior through identifying their self-protective strategies and trusting God instead. It is authored by Kathy Collard Miller and Larry Miller and includes biblical principles, insightful stories, and helpful instruction. It has individual and group discussion questions.
Kathy Collard Miller and Larry Miller are speakers and authors. They have been married 44 years and Larry is a retired police lieutenant. The Millers live in Southern California, and have two grown children and one grandson. Visit them at www.LarryAndKathy.com. Kathy blogs at www.KathyCollardMiller.com.