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Recalulating, Recalculating

I have a new traveling companion. Her name is Gertie. Gertie Garmin. Gertie sits on my dash and tells me when to turn right or left and when to turn around. Only she doesn't say, "turn around." Whenever I make a wrong turn, she says, "Recalculating...Recalculating," and then she begins directing me back to the route I should have taken.

Isn't life a little like navigating with a GPS? We don't always know which way we're supposed to go, because reality isn't quite as simple as the written directions. Or maybe we know what we ought to do, but we choose to do the opposite anyway. Just as with the GPS, when we navigate life decisions, we don't have to go back to the beginning and start where we left off. Getting back on track means recalculating and moving forward from where we are, even if we regret getting there. I wonder how often God says "recalculating" when I deviate from his plan. Sometimes I wonder how long it will take for me to trust his direction instead of insisting I have a better way, but I take comfort in knowing that he is patient with my detours.

Are you on the best course for your life right now? Or are have you taken a side trip from where you know you ought to be? It's never to late to recalculate.


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Marching Around Jericho

I've spent the past 2 days at a hotel working on some writing while my son attends a conference. Around midday today, I felt the need for some exercise, so I put on my walking shoes and headed outside for a break. Since I'm alone in a large city, I was hesitant to walk just anywhere. I'm in a mostly residential neighborhood, so I know my fears aren't rational, but I have this crazy paranoia of being alone in a city. Perhaps it's the nightly news that's corrupted my rationality. Perhaps it's that I've lived in a rural area for so long. Whatever the case, I decided that walking laps around the parking lot would make me feel more secure.

Since the parking lot circles the entire building, it's the perfect walking track. So today, as I rounded the building for the 5th time, the Bible research I'd been doing just moments before came to mind. I had run across the story in Hebrews 11 of the people of Israel marching around the walls of Jericho for seven days, and the contrast made me chuckle. Here I was, circling the walls of the Homestead Suites because I had no courage to venture farther. And there were the Israelites, circling the walls of the city by faith, believing that those walls would fall when they gave a shout.

I'm not necessarily saying that it's unwise to use no discretion when it comes to walking in a city. But I must confess that my faith in other areas of my life echoes my attitude and fears about venturing too far from what feels safe. Often I forget that God has the power to knock down barriers just as he knocked down those walls for Joshua and the people of Israel and I limit his plans for my life when I refuse to trust his leading for my future. Often his plans are unusual. I wonder if Joshua thought marching around a city for 7 days, blowing a trumpet, and shouting were unusual means for conquering a city. Yet Joshua obeyed.

So as I sit here, I ask, "Lord, what unusual plan do you have for me next? Will you teach me to trust your ability to make it happen?"


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