Steering Wheels and Potholders

Steering Wheels and Potholders

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As a preschooler, my daddy would let me “drive” the car.

“Horrors!” exclaims the younger generation, while the children of the Fifties smile at golden memories.

But yes, perfectly good parents allowed their little ones to imitate such grown-up behaviors as baking cakes and driving.

This is how it was done. I would sit on my father’s lap and hold the steering wheel with both hands, but whose feet worked the accelerator and brake?


And his hand was on the steering wheel as well. We would drive around the block at the rocket speed of perhaps fifteen miles per hour. I understood he was the one in control—I would have been terrified otherwise—why, I’d run us into a ditch! But, oh did it feel swell to handle the wheel!

National Museum of Play (

When baking a cake, also at the grand old age of four, I stirred up all the ingredients and poured the batter into a made-for-Linda cake pan. I placed the pan into my Easy Bake Oven, and with tiny hands protected by potholders, I removed the finished cake from 350-degree heat.

How was I able to measure the ingredients?

Mom told me what to do.

She watched as I followed her directions, and she lent a helping hand as needed. When it came time to reach into the hot oven to retrieve the cake, her hands covered mine, making sure we were both protected by the potholders, and together we carried the pan to the cooling rack. Because Mom was in control, I knew I wouldn’t get burned.

It was my joy and Dad’s to drive the car. It was my joy and Mom’s to bake cakes. My heavenly Father and I know the same joy as we spend quality time together.

He guides my life. He directs its course. He speeds it up and slows it down as we pass through joys and sorrows. My hands may be on the steering wheel of life, but I can only steer where God wants me to go. Like four-year-old Linda, I would be terrified if He let me control the wheel. I’d run into far worse than a ditch!

God is the one who gives me instruction through His Word, His Spirit, and the wisdom of mature Christians. He watches me follow His direction for my life, and He steps in as soon as I ask for help. When I reach a point of crisis and need special protection, He’s there covering me with His wings as a hen protects her chicks (Matthew 23:37).

I am blessed to be a person who could absolutely rely on her parents. Even better, I am absolutely safe with my Father in heaven. He is in control.



About Linda Sammaritan

For years, Linda Sammaritan tried to be perfect wife, perfect mother, perfect teacher and crammed so many activities into her days that twenty-four hours couldn’t possibly hold them all – perfectly. She now lives by the motto, “relentlessly eliminate hurry.” Newly retired, Linda keeps the freezer packed with homemade take-out meals for her full- time working husband when she travels to visit children, grandchildren, siblings, and Mom. Read more about her faith and writings at


  1. My girls had the Easy Bake and I do remember kids sitting on Daddy’s lap-be it car or lawn mower! I am comforted by knowing God, like our parents, still is in control. In control of all things. I spend a lot of quiet time listening to Him. Thanks for your post!

  2. You’re welcome. Glad you liked the comparison!

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