Have you ever looked at a compass? The symbols represent a direction, East, West, North and South. Developed during the ancient times for people to find their way, they have become a part of our every day lives. Most people don't say, go south two miles anymore but when you need to know which way is South, there are markers to represent it for you. And as we all know, the sun sets in the West and rises in the East. Our lives have a direction, a purpose, and a God that knows how to get us from one point to another.
Everything in our lives is directed. We play a vital role in which path we will take. God gave us free will and therefore, although the map is set, its not set completely. We can choose to go East, West, North or South or we can choose His way.
In my own journey, I have found that going East, while He wanted me to go West, was confusing, frustrating and tragic. Thank goodness He loves to direct traffic! So when I hit the wall going East, I have to bow down to Him and ask, "Okay God, which way?" For me, it's easier to ask before I go in the wrong direction. I don't like hitting walls and becoming frustrated all because I wanted to go a different way. Some of us figure this out early and others continue to go in the wrong direction. How do we straighten our course? We ask Jesus. Simple really but how often have all of us gone one way, only to be turned around by God later. He understands. That's why we are likened to sheep. We just don't get it the first time. And yet, when we align our will with His, our direction becomes clear, the path is opened and we are on course again. We never had to go in the wrong direction in the first place if we just had asked Jesus to help us find our way.
These shifts from our will to His are detours. Personally, I hate detours. They take you out of your way and can cause you to be late, more often than not. They are supposed to put you on your course and get you around all the construction, but in the end, you come out of one, wondering where you are. And for the most part, I guarantee it took longer. Why? Because it's not the straightest route. Life has many detours but I think most are caused because we don't want to listen. We think we can handle everything on our own and of course, we know better than God, right?
Today, I am well aware of the detours I have taken. Often, they have caused more pain and not much gain. I have learned from them but the lessons came harder than they needed too. All I would have needed to do was ask Jesus to change my course and I would have been there before I knew it.
That's what the Israelites were missing. They lost their course. They wandered and grumbled until anger and idols became their security blanket. When all along, all they needed to do was to ask God to help them and they would have been delivered. I don't know about you, but for me, I would rather be delivered early than continue my way, facing detour after detour. I like the more direct route and as we all know; we will get there faster if we can go directly to our destination.
So, if you're hitting a wall today or you have taken a gigantic detour and can't find your way, ask Christ to be your compass. He knows the right direction. He knew it long before you asked, so simply ask and He will guide you safely. We don't have to do every thing on our own. As a matter of fact, we are called to direct traffic, to help the lost, the weak, the widowed and the orphaned. We are his traffic lights and He is the great conductor. All we ever have to do is align our will to His. Take some time today to identify your detours and ask the Lord of our lives to direct you. Tonight, enjoy the setting of the sun and remember Christ directed that for you!
Isaiah 48:17 NKJV:
Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: "I am the Lord your God, who teaches you to profit, who leads you by the way you should go.
Psalm 27:11 NKJV:
Teach me Your way, O Lord, and lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies.
Psalm 25:5 NKJV:
Lead me in Your truth and teach me,
For You are the God of my salvation;
On You I wait all the day.
Exodus 13:21 NKJV:
And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so as to go by day and night.
Let Him lead Your way. Quit taking those detours and ask Him for your direction first. He will lead You on the right road every time. We are the ones that take the detours, not Him.
My prayer today:
O, Lord, help your children stay on their right path. Lead us daily and help us see Your direction clearly. We are tired of wandering with no water in site. Our eyes are murky and our souls are saddened. We have gone the wrong direction but You, O Lord, can right our path and take us off the detour we have chosen. Our compass is broken. We come before You today asking You to be that compass, to light our way in the night and to bring forth our direction, so that we may do Your will. We align our lives to Your will and ask that You grant us the path with the least resistance. Guide us in Your ways and teach us to stay within the lines. We are like sheep, constantly challenging our direction, will we go East, West, North or South? Only You have the answers we desire. Lead us, O Lord and follow us all our days. We desire to be on Your path for it's the only one we care about. You are the Holy One, the Redeemer and our salvation. Be with us today as we go before You, lead us and we will follow. We thank You for our course and ask that You would protect us on our journey. We are Your servants, make us one with You. In Jesus name, AMEN.