For the last 7 weeks, I’ve been driving through West Virginia to annual association meetings across West Virginia. One thing is for sure, there are very few shortcuts traveling this great state. The mountains kind of make that to be reality. Highway crews many years ago may have cut through mountains, but the ways from point A to point B are rarely “short.”
But the views along the drive sure are beautiful!
My coworkers have told me stories to caution me in my journeys. Sometimes GPS devices cannot be of any help navigating to rural W.V. churches, in fact, they can often lead me astray. There are times in the past that staff have had someone meet them miles away from the church meeting to drive them in so they can make it to their destination. There are times that is just about the only way they would actually make it to the right place.
I almost had one of those experiences last night. Before I headed out, I texted a pastor who I knew would be at the revival meeting to ask for directions. He sent me a response. I loaded up the maps and looked things over and headed on my way… the navigation app decided on taking a slightly different route than he’d sent me but I was confident as I looked at the maps that the GPS would get me there…. on a route about 20 minutes faster than the one I had received by text.
But there was something I didn’t know… the address in my GPS wasn’t for the church. As I rounded the last turn and my GPS said, “Your destination is on the right.” Looking at a driveway it was quite obvious I’d arrived at someone’s home. The address on the mailbox was a match, yet, I wasn’t in the right place. But since I had looked at the maps before leaving home it was easy to determine the church wasn’t much father up the main road. So I continued on and successfully found my way… albeit a few minutes later than I’d intended.
I found out at the end of the meeting that the church doesn’t actually have an address. The one listed was for a church members house just up the road. I should have listened to the directions I was given instead of trying to shave a few minutes off my drive.
But this isn’t a blog about car trips and GPS shortfalls… so, I’d better get to the point. I heard these words this weekend and they haven’t left my mind since.
“There are no shortcuts to grow your relationship with Christ.”
Seems logical, no? And yet… we look for shortcuts all the time. The fastest route to gets from where we are to where we want to be. Or more likely, we look for the easiest route. It’s a shame, I suppose, because so often we miss the beauty along the way, don’t end up quite where we need to go, or get lost along the way.
What does the journey look like that you are on right now? Is the way clear and the path straight forward? Is it filled with twists and turns you didn’t see coming? Did you find your way only to realize the destination wasn’t correct?
What do you do with all life’s twists and turns?
I admit my default is to see them as wrong turns or unnecessary detours. But what if I trusted that there are no shortcuts to growing my relationship with God? What if I trusted that God knows what is best? What if I slowed down to enjoy the journey instead of rushing ahead to the destination?
What would it look like to live truly believing there are no short cuts in growing my relationship with Christ?
It is a funny thing to write, not knowing who will read these words. I wish I knew your journey. That I could write something that spoke directly to where you are at this moment and give you Godly encouragement on how to face the “road” ahead. I’m praying for the many friends who are facing a path in life they never imagined they’d be traveling, a journey that has them worried, or a way ahead that seems impassable. If I can pray for your, please send me a message through this link here!