And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,
“This is the way, walk in it…”
Isaiah 30:21 (ESV)
You know those moments in life that seem super insignificant but are actually really important to your growth as a human being and also as a Christian? Yeah, I had one of those moments last month during Spring Break 2019.
Let me start with a brief geography lesson to make sense of what I’m going to write. There are approximately 1500 cities in Texas. For the most part, people mainly know about Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, and San Antonio. When mentioned to outsiders, most of the other towns are clumped together with their nearest big city. Three of San Antonio’s small towns are Helotes, Bandera, and Boerne (pronounced Burn-ee). I live in Helotes which is west of San Antonio. Bandera Road, aka Highway 16, cuts straight through San Antonio and Helotes, while leading northwest into Bandera City (and county). If you turn north on Scenic Loop from Bandera Road, then you’ll drive toward Boerne.
Last month, my best friend, Shelby, and I planned a day trip to Boerne during Spring Break. I had been there a few times, but almost exclusively for volleyball and basketball games and tournaments in high school over six years ago. I was familiar with where it was, but not entirely sure of exactly how to get there without a gps. As usual, Shelby was the driver for our trip. While we drove down Bandera Road, I noticed she kept driving northwest toward Bandera instead of turning north on Scenic Loop toward where I thought Boerne was. It seemed odd, but like I said, I wasn’t totally familiar with getting to Boerne, so I didn’t say anything. I figured I was wrong and thought, “Eh, she knows what she’s doing.” Except, I wasn’t wrong and she had missed the turn. She realized this five or so minutes later at about the same time I realized we definitely were headed toward Bandera and not toward Boerne. When she admitted we went the wrong way, I laughed it off and admitted I thought she had, but didn’t say anything because I trusted her. She took the first turnaround she could and we were back on the right path toward Boerne. All was well until it wasn’t.
Almost immediately after Shelby turned around, I noticed something incredibly flawed about my thinking. I was so quick to trust Shelby even when my concern about going the wrong way was valid, and I’m so often even quicker to doubt God when my concern about going the wrong way is always so invalid. Shelby is human. She can be and was wrong. Our conversation had distracted her and she missed the turn for where we were going, but I still trusted her without any doubt in my mind. God is perfect. He is never wrong. He always takes me exactly where I need to be, but I often feel doubt, if not front and center, then almost always at the back of my mind. How could this be? How could I trust a God-made human, and doubt God Himself? Needless to say, I was feeling super convicted and have continued to think about that moment regularly since the second Shelby turned around.
I think the reason for my faith in Shelby’s driving versus my doubt in God’s planning is because I can see Shelby. I can audibly hear her voice. She is present in a very real and very tangible way, while God isn’t always, or really ever, like that. I can’t physically see God. I can’t audibly hear His voice. He isn’t physically and tangibly here beside me. And yet, I know, even if I don’t always act like I believe it, that God is very real and always here. So, how can I remember this when I feel concerned that He missed His turn and we’re now going in the wrong direction? I have to remember God never misses a turn.
The fact that I was with Shelby when she missed her turn to Boerne is proof enough that this is true. If God hasn’t always taken me where I’ve needed to be, then I wouldn’t have been sitting in the passenger seat of Shelby’s blue Ford Escape to miss a turn in the first place. I spent a long time praying for God to give me a friend like Shelby and not two months after I journaled my prayers, God sent me to Compass Church where He not only gave me Shelby as a best friend, but also gave me countless other people to pour love, life, and laughter into my soul. God led me to Compass at exactly the right time and He always sends me to the right place at exactly right time because God doesn’t miss turns.
So, now as I sit here writing this post in between worrying about about if and how I’ll have enough money to pay my bills during summer break when bus drivers like myself don’t work, that’s what I have to remember. God doesn’t miss turns. He is always going the right way and when I’m sitting in His passenger seat trusting He knows where He’s going, I’ll never have to worry.