Sufficient Spiritual Cranking Amps


 A few months ago and before the really cold temperatures of winter, I had two days of issues with my 2015 Buick Lacrosse. On both occasions, the interior audio quit working. I had no sound from the radio, no safety tones in the cabin, and I couldn’t hear the turn signals working. No clicking, songs, and audible warnings about seat belts or doors ajar. These episodes mysteriously disappeared after turning the ignition off and restarting once again. I knew something was wrong, but I thought I would wait until the symptoms didn’t go away. Having grown up in a mechanic’s home, I learned to value maintaining an automobile. But I also knew that it is nearly impossible to solve a car problem if it does not show the symptoms while in the repair shop! 😕


Several days later we knew we had a big problem! Monique and I were both surprised and amused as we sat in our seats and tried to start the car for a short trip across town. The first thing that happened is that it would not start and the dashboard information from the computer confirmed trouble with verbal and symbol warnings. 

The next thing that startled us was the popping up of our trunk lid without a single effort on our part to touch the release. And then the wipers slowing began to swipe the windshield. Again, without our touching anything! Then, I noticed instructions about lowering my driver’s side window. How bizarre! Was this the Apocalypse?  This car was going spastic and yet getting us nowhere!

We grabbed our things and transferred to “old faithful,” Monique’s 2006 car that was parked beside us in the same garage. It sat there all ready to serve as if to tease like the Toby Keith song, “How do you like me now?” After delivering Monique for her tutoring assignment, I dropped by the local repair shop and gave them a brief history of the past few days. They dispatched a tow truck to the house. And when we arrived back at the garage, I surrendered the keys while saying, “Good luck! This car is sick!”

About a couple of hours later, I received the call with the much anticipated diagnosis. “It’s your battery!” The estimate was very reasonable and I agreed, “Let’s replace it! Put a good one in there with sufficient cranking amps! I’ve got a ‘boat load’ of technology on that vehicle!” They assured me the new battery would have sufficient CCA's or Cold Cranking Amps. (This is the amount of battery power to allow for 30 seconds of continuous cranking of the engine even in the lowest of temperatures.) 

When I picked up the car later that day, I remarked while receiving the keys from the service manager, "I’ve replaced a lot of batteries over the years, but this was a first. I have not seen this kind of thing in a battery failure before." A technician standing nearby responded, “Today’s cars are so computer-enhanced that any low amperage can cause many crazy problems!” Good to know, I thought! I was glad for the assurance that this was the culprit behind all those spastic symptoms!

Are you having some spiritual "battery issues/? Low spiritual cranking amps? This can cause some crazy symptoms like heightened feelings of worry, shortness of temper, little physical energy, and loss of motivation. We are going through a crazy time with an extreme winter and a Pandemic that won’t go away. We are anxious for the availability of a vaccine for everyone. We are a little on edge about side effects or reoccurrence of Covid-19 symptoms that could set us back further. We are so ready for normalcy to return! We are asking, “Can our spiritual reserves get us through?!”

The Psalmist reminds us that there is security in the "God who is our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble." (46:1 ESV). We do not need to be anxious or afraid when the bottom falls out of our lives. "We will not fear though the earth gives way." (2). Trouble comes and may shake us up, but God shall not be moved. "The Lord of hosts is with us." (7). "Come, behold the works of the Lord." (8). My favorite phrase in this beloved chapter on reassurance is "Be still, and know that I am God." (10). In other words, relax and release your worries into God's care. 

Let's take our hands off the wheel of our lives and let the Lord do the driving! We can always trust in God's strength, provision and protection! And know this with certainty, His infinite reserves can never be depleted! 

Mike Keppler, retired pastor, 
active churchman and
doting grandparent. 


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