Well you know the saying if it’s going to go wrong I am going to be the one who messes it up. I had a simple job; all I was to do was drive to the DFW airport to take a friend to catch a flight. We even had a practice run. Seems simple enough I knew I had this one. What could possible go wrong?
I am not sure what went wrong, but it did. I dropped her off and began the journey back. I needed the South Gate Exit found it no problem. Now all I needed was the exit for 360. Now that evidently was a problem. I never found 360, but did find an exit so I took it thinking I was on 360. I wasn’t. I am not sure where I ended up. I just know I wasn’t on 360. I tried using an app on my phone. It was directing me back. After missing several of the turns it wanted me to take it just went off. That is not a good sign when your navigation app gets frustrated with you and turns itself off. I immediately called OnStar. The conversation went like this, “Hello, how may I help you today?” I responded very calmly, “I am lost and need to get home.” The operator then replied, “Excuse me, did you say you were lost and needed to get home?” In which I replied, “Yes, I did.” I remained calm and did not panic. So then the operator proceeded to ask my address and then she asked me to spell my town, and on and on it went. Now while I am talking to her I am driving. So, I am either getting farther away or getting closer to my destination. I found out I needed to make a U-turn in a safe and quick manner. I was headed in the wrong direction. I made my U-turn and followed her directions. I ended up coming through Ft. Worth and then home. On my way home using a hands free device I called my husband. In the usual husband manner he says after telling him I was lost, “Where are you?” I tell him calmly. His next reply was so much like a man, “How in the heck did you get there?” Well, I thought about this for a minute, if I knew the answer to that question I might not be lost. In which he replied, “Well, call OnStar and they will get you home.” I did that already, I just thought he might be concerned I was lost.
When you get done laughing I want to share some things with you. First, I was upset I couldn’t do this simple task. More importantly I was disappointed in myself. It was supposed to be simple. Then I began to see the other side. I remained calm, did not panic, and found my way back with help. God was with me all the way reminding me He was there with me and He wouldn’t let me wonder the countryside forever. “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:8
There are several reasons I remained calm, cool, and collected. First of all if you don’t know I have a car full of frogs that ride with me. As I began driving I prayed that God would be with me and He was. As I drove my frogs reminded me that I must fully rely on God to help me get through this. “For I am the LORD your God, who upholds your right hand, Who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you.’ Isaiah 41:13
Second, before I left the airport I prayed. I prayed God would be with me and keep me safe. He kept me safe and was with me all the way even though I got lost. Not knowing where I was or how I was going to get back was a scary thing. Once I turned on OnStar and heard a calming voice that would lead me back was comforting.
God taught me a very good lesson. I know that if I am called upon to drive somewhere I don’t know where I am going there are a few things I can count on. First is God, second is I must not panic and third is the power or prayer from family and friends and even yourself. I forgot to mention my prayer group that I am a part of knew what I was doing and they covered me in prayer as I was driving. Pretty cool huh?
Another thing that happened earlier in the day and now as I reflect back on it I realize God was in this whole day. In our Bible Study class that morning we were talking about how God protects us and keeps us safe and where we see God at in our lives. One of my friends mentioned how He watches over him as he drives about. Our Pastor was in the class and she agreed. Her husband drives a little ways to work and she mentioned how God watches over him as he travels. I sat there knowing I was going to make this trip listening to people tell me how God watches over us as we travel. I felt at peace.
God is so good to watch over us as we travel from one place to another. This got me to thinking about those times I get lost on this journey of faith. I make a wrong turn; I lose my directions or miss something God has in store for me. While we are trying to find our way back God sends us people to help us find our way back. He never lets us wander forever. He woos us back to Him. As soon as we realize we have lost our way and we want to head back He always sends us someone that will comfort us and help us back to Him. Before I had called OnStar I had my navigation app. If I had followed the app’s direction I might not have stayed lost as long as I was. The Bible is a good source to help us find our way back when we are lost, but we need to do what it tells us we need to do. Just like the navigation was telling me what to do and I didn’t do it, it didn’t do me any good to have it on. I must follow directions if I want to find my way back.
I couldn’t find my way back on my own because I didn’t know the area I was in or the way to get back. I was unfamiliar with where I was. That’s the way it is with us. When we know we are lost it doesn’t do us any good to try and go it alone. Now maybe you have been down this same road before and you know what it’s going to take to get back, but I bet you had counted on the Bible, friends or prayer to help you get back even. Even when we are aware of where we are we often have trouble getting back; we lack focus.
Finally, when we are lost one of the first things we need to do is pray. We don’t need to fear God. He is not going to abandon you because you made a mistake. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). You need to remain cool, calm, and collected and begin the process of finding your way back. Years ago if this had happened I would have pulled over cried my eyes out and panicked. I would have called my husband and demanded he leave work and come and find me. This time in my life it’s different. I confidently prayed to God and trusted that He would send just the right person to help me find my way back. Panicking would not have gotten me home. Panicking wouldn’t have let me have the confidence to know I can get lost and can get found just as quickly again with help. Panicking would have not helped me trust in God.
Want to know something funny? I am going to have to drive to another location soon for an Emmaus Gathering. I have been to this church a lot. I have always gone as a passenger. Now all those I have traveled with are boarding a ship and going on a cruise and guess what? I will be driving to this church alone not sure of where I am going or how to get there. Am I frightened? Nope, God got me home from a lost journey and He will get me there and home from safely from this place too. God’s got this.
This isn’t the first time I have been lost and more than likely it won’t be the last. Just like my journey of faith I will mess up, get lost, have to ask for forgiveness and then seek ways to get back on the right road that leads to my destination which is Christ.
Are you lost on your journey? Don’t know how to get back from where you are? Don’t panic, God’s got this. Seek out people, family and friends that can help lead you back to where you want to be which is close to God. Seek God through prayer and Bible Study. He is beckoning you back to Him. Most importantly when He gives you directions follow His lead; it will always lead straight back to Him.
Shall we start out on a journey together? Let’s now worry about getting lost or not knowing the way God will provide for us as we journey together. Come and go with me there is adventure waiting for us.
Dear God: Thank you for watching over me and protecting me. Thank you for people who are willing to help us find our way back when we are lost. Just like OnStar and my navigation app you give us tools that lead us to you when we follow the directions. Help us to listen for your call as you beckon us to come back to you. Help us when we are lost to find our way back home to you. Amen