Bumper stickers show insight

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 25, 2014

Some proudly announce a child’s honor roll achievement in school. Others declare their loyalty to a college or high school team, easily recognized by the Tiger, Elephant, Bulldog, or Bobcat, Eagle or school colors printed on it.

Though they can come in all shapes and sizes, most bumper stickers are rectangular with enough space for a few words. They deliver a message the driver wants others to see.

“American by birth, Southern by the grace of God” speaks of pride in one’s heritage. “Vehicle Insured by Smith and Wesson” warns a potential thief of the owner’s gun. A humorous phrase based on a Disney movie says, “I owe, I owe, so off to work I go.”

People campaign for their candidate with a bumper sticker or stand up for an issue.  In recent years with our country at war, many folks have placed American flags and patriotic quotes like “God bless the USA” on their cars, trucks, and vans.  Other messages remind us to “Pray for our troops” or “Support our soldiers.”

Whatever a bumper sticker says, whoever travels behind a vehicle with one or more cannot help but read it, especially at an intersection while the light is red.  That’s why, for me, it’s sometimes revolting to follow a car with curse words or downright vulgar statements.

Bumper stickers can carry a witness for Christ. Some of these ask, “Have you prayed about it?” or “Got Jesus?” or comments like “God forgives. Let Him.”

A series of billboards and bumper stickers a few years ago were designed as a message from God.  “Does the road you’re traveling lead to My house?” and “That love thy neighbor thing – I meant it.”

Familiar sayings were once quite popular on bumper stickers such as “WWJD – What Would Jesus Do?” or “Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven.”

Sadly, on more than one occasion, I’ve read the following words on a vehicle in front of me.  “Heaven doesn’t want me and Hell’s afraid I’ll take over.”  This bumper sticker speaks volumes about the owner of that vehicle, but that person couldn’t be more wrong.

Heaven does want them. If I could talk to them face to face, I’d tell them that God loves them so much that He gave His only Son to die for their sins. Through Jesus’ sacrifice, there is forgiveness and eternal life in heaven God is preparing for those who love and accept Christ as their personal Savior.

Think again about taking over hell. The Bible describes hell as a place of eternal torment and suffering with weeping and wailing.  Hell was prepared for the devil. Though human beings are capable of committing unspeakable evil, the devil is the ultimate wicked one.

According to the apostle Paul, Christians, by their lives, are living letters “known and read by all” (2 Corinthians 3:2). As someone once said, you and I may be the only Bible a person reads. What are people reading when they see us?