Temptation? How to face it and how to beat it!!!

Ok, so I like cars. I’d love to spend a LOT of money and buy a very expensive one. This, of course, would cause me to feel really guilty, knowing that the money could have been used so much better otherwise, especially if I asked God about it! Not that God doesn’t want to Bless us, just that the tempter is also at work and we need to be careful! So, I go to the car show, have a good couple of hours lusting after them, beat down the monster, and go home victorious … without a car! Then, on Sunday, I can rejoice ever more with the Lord as I give my offering cheerfully and free of guilt. Win/win for ministry and me, lose/lose for the enemy and his tempters.

Here, then, is a spiritual blog about the show:

The 2017 Portland Auto Show … of the Nations: (Canada), Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, (Mexico), Sweden, United Kingdom, United States! Canada and Mexico listed as manufacturing countries, but not branded by such. (This may be an incomplete listing but is the most obvious to the casual observer).

All these industrialized nations competing for a piece of the U.S.A. market is a good thing for us, I think, as the cars being made today all seem vastly superior to the ones I grew up with, made mostly here! I can’t think of a U.S. made car in the 60’s or 70’s that holds a candle to any of today’s makes from any of the countries listed.

My personal rating system this year contains 3 elements, which would easily be changed by any other person looking at the same cars I did. This is because cars have become so personal, not to mention so diverse in engineering, design, and features. Still, here is my analysis:

  1. My first Element does not consider the ‘type’ of car, meaning sedan, SUV, van, etc. Rather, I focus on the cabin. The cabin of the automobile has become a cockpit. It is no longer the place you just steer the car from, but now where you operate and entire assortment of technologies. This means, of course, that the more technologies you put IN the cockpit the more variables you introduce into how that cockpit operates. My favorite excelled in cockpit feel and look. I wish I could say how it performed but I didn’t try it out. Will work on that.
  2. Before you laugh at my number 2 element, think about it for a moment: cup holder placement. Too many cars treat this as an after-thought, when everyone I know drinks beverages while they are in the car! A poorly placed cup holder is dangerous in addition to being annoying. Considering the time we spend in our cars now and the food we eat in them, this is both practical AND a safety item!
  3. Value is my 3rd element, and probably the main reason you buy a certain car once you’ve decided upon ‘type.’ Value is also personal, not just financial. Some of us simply will not buy a car if it doesn’t have certain features, so comparing feature-sets is essential to comparing value. The car manufacturers excel at feature-set escalation! Meaning, they know just how to tempt you UP the ladder of features, appealing to every perceived need, and then creating new ones! My newest must-have is Adaptive Cruise Control, which is ‘set and forget’ technology offered by everyone now. Not only is it convenient, but it improves safety, and for those of us driving Interstate 5 so very appreciated.

My picks:

  1. Jaguar XF Sport. A great combination of features into a platform of elegance and distinction, priced below $50,000!
  2. Almost tied for first, the Volvo V70. Their European Delivery program may tip the scales to buying this one over the Jag, but then again, the Jag is, well, a Jag!
  3. A car I would actually buy is the Subaru Impreza, all new for this year. Lots of goodies in this package, and you can almost buy 2 of them for 1 Jaguar!

Being able to go to the auto show while most folks are working is quite a luxury. At 10 am on a Friday most of the attendees were of the Senior variety so the actual looking and sitting in the cars moved along slowly! The men were mostly interested in power and technology, while the women seemed most interested in color, style, and comfort. Since the manufacturers know all this they play to our weaknesses and make most of the displayed cars powerful and pretty! That said, there was actually a more impressive Number 1 vehicle at this show: The US Army had some kind of enormous vehicle, not a small-ish Humvee, that was incredible, AND pulled a 105mm Howitzer cannon behind it. This thing can stop and set up the cannon in 5 minutes and hit a target 40 miles away with laser/satellite guidance, meaning, the Sgt. told me, he can put the shell in your window! I asked him what the turret thing on top was meant to hold, knowing it had a bracket for some kind of weapon. He told me it was classified Top Secret … Go Army! Win! And, thank you for your service!