Traveling in Unfamiliar Territory
Tomorrow is my 43rd birthday! I recently traveled from San Antonio, TX to Shreveport, LA to visit my mom. This was to be a familiar 7-8 hour trip, a route which I have traveled several times. I plugged my mother’s address into the GPS, gassed up, and headed north on Interstate 35. I wanted to avoid the heavy traffic in Austin, so I hopped onto the toll road and proceeded to go around the expected traffic.
As I followed the toll road, I noticed that the GPS had me making it in a mere six hours and fifteen minutes and it was not taking me back to I-35. Instead, it was taking me on some backwoods and unfamiliar roads. My phone reception was minimal and it seemed as though my GPS was taking me further and further into the unknown. I was actually a little scared. I didn’t want to stop for food, to use the restroom, to walk the dog or anything. I just wanted to get to a familiar landmark – a road where I was comfortable with my surroundings.
Five hours or so into my trip, my GPS directed me to turn right onto Highway 43. I became increasingly apprehensive and concerned that I may, in fact, be headed the wrong way. The thirty minute drive on Highway 43 seemed like it took two hours. I was tired and just ready to get to my destination. Just as I was about to stop, the GPS instructed me that Interstate 20 was 5 miles ahead! I-20 was a road in which I was familiar! I thought to myself, I-20… 20/20 vision… I could finally see clearly the direction in which I was going!
As I happily booked it down I-20, knowing that I was only 30 minutes from my destination, I realized that Hwy 43 would not have been so scary, had I looked at the step-by-step directions Google Maps had provided me in my phone.
It is often the same with us in our everyday lives. We have a plan, however, life often gets us off track. We become weary as we venture into the unknown. We doubt ourselves and the tools God has given us to navigate through this life. If we would just refer to the original Google, we would find that our Father in Heaven has provided written instructions for every situation we face.
We often want to give up as we go through our valleys, not understanding that if we just stay the course, familiar territory is around the corner. As I traveled down Hwy 43, I realized that in my (almost) 43 years, I have made so many plans for my life. I have gotten off, what I thought was, the course for my life. During that time, I have been absolutely afraid of the unknown, the unfamiliar territory or terrain in which I found myself, and the thought of having to stop and turn around – even though I had come so far. I felt lost!
Proverbs 16:9 (NKJV) A man’s heart plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps. So when you make your plans, be prepared for God to direct your steps. It may be unfamiliar, scary, and it may even seem out of the way; however, know that God is ALWAYS in control and watch your Hwy 43 turn into your I-20 – Familiar Territory!