The LORD is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving. Psalm 28:7 NLT
Twice I’ve used my GPS to provide guidance to an address unknown to me and got lost. The first time I remember having to attend a meeting at the Santa Rosa City Schools District Office. I set the address and started the navigation. At one point I was instructed to make a left turn. Immediately upon turning I saw a brick wall at the end of the road – the highway. The GPS was not updated to reflect the build of Hwy. 101. The second was to my nephew’s house in Bakersfield. I have been driven there in the past by my sister in law, but never on my own. Again I set the address, started off in the right direction, and again got lost. This time, the GPS was outdated because it was a new subdivision.
Life is sometimes like that. At some point, we all get lost in the right direction. Whether by choice or happenstance, we set off with all the very best intentions and still manage to get lost. We know we’re moving in the right direction, we can see the destination or at best sense its presence, yet we fail to get there. Panic sets in. We become anxious, palms get sweaty. We are in unknown territory and we have other challenges tugging at us – do I have enough gas, will I be late for the meeting, I need to use the bathroom, is it safe, the dog is barking, the ice cream will melt, the baby is crying, I’ll miss the deadline; the list goes on!
What do you do when lost in the right direction? It can be easy to resolve when in the car: you simply recalibrate the GPS and continue on your journey. But it’s not always that simple when facing the challenges of life. How do you recalibrate when you or your loved one gets a life-threatening diagnosis? What computer can you reset to put you on the right path? What GPS system can you reprogram to calm the anxiety growing in the pit of your stomach?
When I am faced with such life challenges – and there have been many of late – I remember one truth: This is God’s world and his plan. I may not be able to change the immediate circumstance, but I can find comfort in knowing that God will work it out to his glory and my good. Every situation, whether good or bad, is an opportunity to grow closer to God, an opportunity for deeper understanding of his ways. The deeper the relationship with God, the more we experience God’s love, peace and joy, the less we experience fear, anxiety and struggle.
The next time you’re lost in the right direction, try this:
- Instead of focusing on your situation, focus on God. Trust God with your anxieties and fears. Have faith that he will handle the situation. When we surrender to God, we find perfect love, peace and joy.
- Flow into a state of thanksgiving for the good God has placed in your life. When we thank God we flow into God’s grace and mercy. Joy is the outpouring of God’s grace. Thanksgiving, grace and joy are indicators of God’s love.
- Find comfort in knowing that no matter what the outcome, God will work it out for his glory and your good.
Remember that being lost in the right direction is part of the life journey. But if you surrender to God, thank God and have faith that he will work it to your better good and his glory, you will come to know the love, peace and joy of God. You will realize that love and fear cannot coexist. You will soon find yourself in a new direction.
This post is a rewrite of an earlier post I wrote on my website www.teridmc.com. This rewrite reflects the impact of God on my journey.
Teri McClanahan is a Spiritual Cancer Coach. If you would like more information on her ministry and how you can work with Teri, visit her website at https://terimcclanahan.net.