Blind Driving

Yesterday (2/12), I drove down to St Louis to attend a quarterly meeting of the Acts 29 Network of churches.  It was a really good investment of time and I’ll share more on that later.  But this morning, I want to describe to you some interesting insights I gained on the drive down.

CAN’T SEE A DANG THING!

driving.jpg 

I left early in the morning to head down.  This was my first trip with a GPS in the car.  It’s a really neat gadget, but I’m still partial to maps.  (Is that just a guy thing?).  Anyway, I fully intended to bring my map as a back-up, but somehow in my rush to get out the door, I forgot it.  About 20 minutes into the trip I realized I didn’t have it.  So now, I actually have to depend on the GPS.  Throughout the 3-hour drive, there was a very light freezing mist falling.  No big deal, but it would come up off the road when a truck was in front of you and mess up the windshield.  For some reason, my window washers weren’t squirting, and I couldn’t clean the windshield off.  Every now and then, I would get enough moisture on the windshield that it would clean up pretty good with just the wipers, but all-in-all, nothing too bad.  But the closer I got to St Louis, the heavier the traffic got.  And the more traffic, the worse the windshield got.  Finally, twenty miles outside of St Louis, I stopped at a station to clean the windshield.  Guess what?  The squeegees were frozen in the buckets.  I had to drive the last 30 miles to my destination with almost no visibility out of my windshield. 

LESSONS LEARNED

Most of this will relate to the GPS system.  It may not mean much to you as you read it, but I can promise you, it meant much to me yesterday. It also reminds me that God can use almost any situation in life to teach us.

1.  Total Trust– Without my map yesterday, I was left with no choice but to completely rely on the GPS system.  I must tell you that was very unsettling for me.  I have always prided myself on being able to find anything with a map.  I’m comfortable with a map.  GPS?  Well, it’s cool in theory, but I have very little experience with it, so I’m trusting something I have very little track record with.

2.  Noise – It was incredibly windy yesterday and the noise was pretty significant.  With all the road and wind noise, I could barely hear the GPS telling me what to do.  I had to turn off the radio and reduce the noise around me to the bare minimum in order to hear.  

3.  Can’t See – Because of my windshield, I was virtually driving blind.  I could not read road signs until the last minute.  I could no longer rely on my own senses to get me where I needed to go.  I had to trust what the GPS was telling me about where I am and where I was going.

4. It’s the Small Turns That Confuse Us– I realized yesterday that I could cover lots of miles without the help of the GPS.  While I was on the interstate, I knew exactly where I was and how much further I had to go.  It’s when you get off the interstate, onto the side roads where there are lots of turns to navigate where we get lost.  I could have gotten from here to St Louis yesterday easily without the GPS, but I would have never made it to my destination without it.

YOUR TURN (That’s the GPS talking)

Now, I could further elaborate and unfold all the spiritual principles in the four points above, but I’d rather you do that.  What speaks to you from this list?  What have you experienced that you can share here?

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2 Responses

  1. Here is what I think of the GPS:
    1. When you get off route, it just keeps repeating “off route – recalculating”. Yeah, I got it the first 5 times. Now where is the correct route?
    2. When you are approaching 2 ramps to your right, one going North and one going South, it says “in 500 feet, take ramp right”. OK – maybe I should know if I am going North or South but I don’t – so which ramp!
    3. A much better invention: a gas station with an attendant where you can ASK DIRECTIONS!
    Spiritual reference:
    1. Some times God just keeps hitting you over the head with the same message. Recalculate your direction!
    2. You have to know at least directionally where you are going in your life. I am not taking the North/South reference to mean Heaven and Hell here, but let me ponder that some more….
    3. Most often God speaks to us by the people around us giving us direction – even the people we don’t like and the direction we don’t like to hear. So we need to make sure we are ASKING THEM for feedback.

    Sidenote: I have definitely found the GPS a necessary evil. I complain about it but I have no idea how I would have found all those soccer fields in all those strange cities without it!
    Donna

  2. Thanks, Donna. Those are great. I think I have personally experienced all three.

    Keep ’em coming y’all!

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