If you don’t know where you are, then you can’t know where you are going. Dave won’t mind me telling you, he’s horrible with directions. He would be great, except he gets lost in the excitement of where we are going. In his quest onward he often forgets the reality of where we are.
On our first vacation as a married couple, he learned a valuable lesson: either pay better attention to where you are or listen to your new wife! The drive from Cincinnati to Florida was something we both experienced dozens of times growing up. With family in Florida, I felt like I could make the trip it in my sleep.We knew where to stop, when to not stop and significant signs telling us we were almost home.
Returning home this time was different. Dave, so focused on where we were headed, forgot to pay attention to where we were. He wanted to make it to Georgia. He had madue up his mind to make it to Georgia becuase, no one gets gas in Florida. Gas is cheaper in Georgia. You canread that in a sarcastic tone if you’d like, but getting to Georgia became the challenge.
Thirty minutes from the Florida/Georgia line (not the group, the actual place), I pointed out the gas gauge and he reassured me we still had plenty of time. Dave is determined and most of the time this is my favorite quality of his, but this particular morning, I struggled to celebrate his determination. I watched as the distance between each exit only grew longer and longer. I will spare you the painful details of the argument ensuing as we pulled our car over to the side of the road, miles from any exit. This was not an arugment I wanted to win. We we’re stranded, completely out of gas, on the side of the road, in the middle of nowhere. Our (really Dave’s) inability to recognize where we were had cost us as we journeyed forward.
Every faith journey has to start somewhere. We cannot be afraid to ask hard questions about where we are. Jesus is most real to us in our present reality. He isn’t waiting for who we are going to become, He is sitting with who we currently are. This means when we come into the dressing room and allow ourselves full disclosure, He doesn’t run away. He won’t heal, what we won’t see. It’s why He asked the lame man who spent his life lying by the pool of Bethesada, “What do you want?” Jesus didn’t not know what the man wanted, but He needed the man to know what He really wanted. What if our hard questions bring us more fully into the light concerning who we are? What we we stopped being afriad to ask them? What if their answers invited us to move forward? Jesus doesn’t answer us to condemn us, He answers us to free us.
Take a minute and ask God, What’s going on? Before we go any further, pause and ask God to open your eyes to what’s going on. In your present reality, your marriage, your friendships, your relationships with your children, your job, your finances, your trust for the future; is there something in there He wants to add fuel to but your inability to see the circumstance for what it really is, is keeping you from the freedom He has for you?
“Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearch- able things you do not know.”
(Jer. 33:3, NIV)
Maybe try something like this: God, what’s going on? How are things in my life spiritually? Am I who You intended for me to be? How is my relationship with You? What are the things in our relationship that are keeping me from experiencing more of you?
Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
Hard questions sometimes have hard answers, but hard answers aren’t the enemy when we have Jesus. We are not fighting from a place of defeat, we are fighting forward from a place of victory. We’ve already won this thing because of who He is. The only way we miss out on experiencing His kingdom fully while we are here on earth is if we refuse to acknowledge where we are and stay in the place of deception. He has so much more for thos of us who don’t allow the fear of the unknown to keep us quiet.