Tuesday, December 23, 2008

GPS for the Journey

T W E N T Y - S I X - L E T T E R S
Have you ever been driving to your destination when you are suddenly greeted by those unexpected orange detour signs in the road? You have to take a different route than what you had planned. It takes more time. You don’t know what you’ll encounter. But what if this detour saves you from an accident? What if it puts you in the presence of someone you could help? Or puts something in your path that could literally save your ‘life’?

A few years back, in 2005, I had ‘mapped out’ this move up to DC for a job. That job later faded out, but I have continued to keep my eyes open during this ‘detour.’ I've realized amazing blessings that had come into my life as a result of making that move up here: -New friends. Great neighbors. Good health. An amazing, supportive church community. Strength and support in my family. You’ve heard the phrase, ‘enjoy the journey.’ Well, if I hadn’t kept my eyes open, during the detour from my original plans, look at what blessings I would have missed out on!

That detour continues even as I write this. But my prayers have never been outcome-oriented. They have always been simply for strength and for guidance. They continue to be. I may not be where ‘I’ thought I’d be, but what if I’m right where God needs me to be?

When we get detoured or lost, there may be a reason we are on that different path. Something to learn. Someone to encounter. Some means to grow, or to help. So take a moment. Look around. Be grateful and aware of what’s around you on your diversion. And if you still feel lost, try this “GPS” for your journey: -Go Pray Somewhere. Ask for direction.

What unexpected detours have happened in your life this year?

God is good. He’s been with me so far and I don’t think he’ll leave me now. Open your eyes. Enjoy the journey, even the detours. Especially the detours. They just might be filled with unexpected blessings.
This is from my essay in the 2008 Woodside Advent Devotional, "Our Journeys with God"
©2008 Wendy Hudgins

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