I love our GPS, I chose a British accent and she says things like “Boolevard”, or “Object Ahead” (like an objection instead of an actual object)
I’ve grown very dependent On the GPS. Much like spell checker has reduced my ability to spell on my own, I don’t think I could find my mailbox from the front porch without an electronic gadget telling me how to get there.
But, I’m curious… Did you watch the clip? Has that ever happened to you? Obviously, not to that extreme. I don’t expect you to have actually driven into water at the advice of a computer. But I would also wager you have been led to the water. Has your GPS ever misled you? Mine has. Quite a bit.
When I listen to the GPS and follow it to a successful destination, I feel good about myself. I chose to listen. I saved time, gas, wear and tear. I’ll sing it’s praises. But I’ll also take some credit.
When the GPS is wrong, I want to toss it out of the window and never use it again. If I had followed my instincts, I would have been home by now. The GPS is always to blame when it’s wrong. And it can be all sorts of wrong: it can tell me to turn too late, mispronounce the street name, the volume is too low, “unverified area”, “make a u-turn if possible”…
So what happens when we choose to follow God and we end up getting lost along the way? This place isn’t what I signed up for. I didn’t mean to turn down here. We passed my exit miles ago. Why did God lead me here? There is pain here. There is emotional distress.
One of the bigger problems with this way of thinking is that we don’t fully know where God plans to take us, even if, we properly submit to His will. When you are living in a relationship with God, there are no wrong turns. Did you catch that I didn’t go for the obvious cliches? I could have referenced Jesus taking the wheel or how we take turns driving (so many obvious comparisons while we journey down this road of life)… God doesn’t want a copilot, he doesn’t want passengers, He let His Boy die on the cross for us so we could be His family. His companions. Journeying with Him. Growing together.
So when in a properly nurtured relationship with God, there are no wrong turns, there are no miscalculations. We find the path off the main road because that is part of our flight plan. Miracles don’t happen where they aren’t needed. There has to be a storm before you can calm it. There has to be a disease before you can cure it. There has to be pain for healing to take place. Jesus said it Himself, He didn’t come to heal the healthy people. He didn’t come to bless the rich.
So often we look around and cry out at our circumstances. We don’t want to be in the poverty or the sickness, or in the path of the storm… but then we ask why God isn’t using us to do His will. When you end up in the lake, don’t throw out the GPS, start looking for the type of thing Jesus would have done in this very situation. When we look around and loved ones are dying, family is chronically sick, friends are in despair, good people are suffering… its easy to shake that fist and claim that God needs to stop and ask for directions.
Or we could follow that awe-inspiring example of Jesus, roll up our sleeves, and make ourselves at home in this little hovel off the beaten path. We are where we need to be if God is our Father. If we truly want to walk in the footsteps of Jesus, its time to start looking for His footprints. We wont find those in many of the places we’ve been looking. He was with the sick, the misunderstood, the needy, the exhausting. When that temptation sinks in to cry out, “why!!!” to God… think instead and ask “How”. How can we be Him in this place in our lives.