You might be an engineer, pharmacist, businessperson, pastor, or college student, but you probably spend a lot of time commuting from one place to another.  It is approximated that a person spends 37 minutes commuting to and from work.  Wow, that is over an hour of your day that could potentially be seen as useless.  Many of us DREAD the commute back and forth from work!

"My boring commute" Photo Courtesy of Betina Daniel (c)

“My boring commute” Photo Courtesy of Betina Daniel (c)

How can you use your commute as a world changer? Here are four ideas that I have implemented during my commutes:

1.  Pray like a crazy person.

Often it is easy for me to limit my time of prayer to a morning or evening ritual.  However, what would it look like to pray for a specific place in the world every morning on your way to work?  Be intentional.  Consider picking a country on a Sunday afternoon and set a reminder on your phone during your daily commute to pray for that country.  If you need help choosing countries then consider Operation World.  Then when you get the reminder, pray for BIG things to happen in that area of world.  For example, pray that God would supernaturally support the efforts of the underground church in China.  Pray for miracles to happen that glorify Jesus in Sudan.  Pray for Indian officials to cross the line of faith today!  Why not?  It may take only 5-10 minutes, and God hears our prayers.  Prayer changes the world.

2.  “Read” audio-books.

With the use of technology, you can listen to great books while commuting.  What would it look like for you to choose books that will broaden your understanding of the world?  One such book is the Bible.  Consider starting a reading plan with YouVersion to help you read the Bible.  Reading plans like the one-year Bible, the Gospels, the Epistles, etc. are great ways to engage scripture.  Use your phone or car audio device to listen to the passages as your drive.  Also, consider listening to a biography about a missionary, social leader, or a thought leader.  For example, I finished reading “Bruchko” an autobiography of Bruce Nelson. It was thrilling, inspiring, and sobering. (Other great books that I recently finished are “Radical” by David Platt or “Walking From East to West” by Ravi Zacharias).  These books help me see the world differently.  Another idea is to tune into a podcast and intentionally learn more about the world and yourself. (Some of my favorites are “This Is Your Life” by Michael Hyatt and “Leadership Podcast” with Andy Stanley).

3.  Mentor someone or be mentored.

It is easy for me to “zone out” during my commute and then complain that I do not have time to invest in others or be invested into by others.  What a foolish thing to say!  Pick up the phone (preferably using a hands-free device) and call someone!  Make it a regular weekly call – perhaps during every commute home on Thursday.  Share your life with someone.  Those 37 minutes together could breathe life into your friend.  What would it look like if you intentionally picked out 4-5 friends in whom you could invest time, love, and energy this month?   Whoa, you mean a different friend every week of the month?!  Of course!  Seek out people that you admire and pick their brain for 25 minutes about faith, your career, your passion, or your calling.  Be inspired.  Inspire others.  Change the world from the cabin of your car.

4.  Dream BIG about the world.

On the way back from work, I often dream about my next vacation or what I might have for dinner!  What if you could dream about bigger things?  As a world changer, you should never be satisfied with status quo, but seek out new places to be renewed and transformed.  Consider areas of passion, like one-on-one mentoring, or playing basketball, or playing XBOX, or going for walks – now, dream how you can make that passion have more impact!  Dream about mentoring one student one day after work next week.  Dream about taking your elementary kids from church to play basketball one Saturday this month.  Dream about walking around your neighborhood and befriending people on your street.  Dream that each of these activities will lead to deeper relationships and ultimately Kingdom impact.  If you dream it, then it may just happen!  Try it!

As you can see, you can redeem your commute!  I have done all of these things off and on, and I will often do more than one during a commute.  I challenge you to see that this time of commute does not have to be useless, but it can be used for greater purposes.  Be an everyday world changer, and use your commute for the Kingdom.  Start today.

Do you have any other ideas on how to use your commute?  What have you done that works?  Please leave a comment and we can discuss more about using commutes as world changers!