I’m one of those guys who thinks he has a natural radar. So it’s a little damaging to my ego to admit that I have a GPS app and use it often. I have to say the radar in my cranium has glitches sometimes. Since I started using the app, I haven’t gotten lost. The app gives the best route by avoiding traffic, and it will reroute me when I miss a turn. Admittedly, these are things my natural radar can’t do.
Getting lost can be frustrating. You make turn after turn, and your designation is still nowhere in sight. The whole purpose of having a GPS app is to get to where you want to be going without going in circles. I appreciate its accuracy, but that is also one of its shortfalls. Whenever I’ve gotten lost, I discovered new things. Twists and curves can be an adventure. Wandering is a way of seeing the unexpected and learning about those discoveries that expand our minds. Getting lost can be frustrating, but it can also be about new roads that lead to exciting surprises.
Life is about being both a nomad and a pilgrim. Nomads wander from place to place. When they find a place where there is food, they stay until that food source is used up and will move to the next place where there is another supply of food, but they don’t know where that place is. They will keep moving until they find another good place. They keep repeating this process without ever having a place where they settle down for too long.
Nomads wouldn’t have much use for a GPS app. They go where the wind takes them. Pilgrims, on the other hand, would be more likely to use a GPS app. They have a designation in mind, but the trip usually has unexpected things happen along the route. Even with a GPS app giving directions, it can’t stop rain from flooding a bridge out or a fallen tree from blocking the road ahead. A GPS app can’t stop accidents from happening along the way.
We are like nomads if you think about how many different places that you are in a day. We don’t just sit in one chair all day long or stay in one room, but we move about and go to many places. Once we fulfill our purpose in one place, we move on to the next place. We are also like pilgrims with a designation in mind. We have our goals and lists of to do things to achieve those goals. But we don’t have much control over what happens along the way. Life has those unexpected things that happen that can be frustrating or exciting.
We also need to have an understanding about the difference about being still and sitting stagnant. When we are being still, we can have deep thoughts contemplating our purpose and meaning, especially in our relationship with God. Just sitting still in prayer and getting to know God is a good thing and needs to be done often.
But staying stagnant can bring all kinds of problems. Stagnancy is when we have a thought or feeling stuck in us. Something has upset us, and we think of that circumstance over and over again. We stay stuck in our disappointment or frustration, and we don’t move on in life.
What we need to know is that God has made us to be forward moving people. In this life, we may feel that we are going around in circles. It seems at times that there are days that are meaningless and unproductive, but faith tells us a different story about what is happening. God is always taking us to new places.
When the Israelites were in the desert, they wandered for a long time, but God did lead them by clouds during the day and fire by night. God had a designation in mind for them that He called the Promised Land. Through a lot of struggles and learning about God through those tough times, they did make it. A GPS app would not have gotten them their sooner, for they had to go through things along the way to gain a fuller understanding of what faith in God really is.
Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem knowing that it was the place that he would give his life for the sins of the world. On the way, he met people-some who rejected him because he was not the political leader that they wanted. Others were not ready to fully commit to following him. They made excuses. It’s not that is wrong to want to bury your relative or to say good-bye to your family, but with these guys, they were delaying and making excuses to change their lives to become a full disciple of Jesus.
An old saying goes, “Everyone wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to go today.” If you don’t make a full commit to Jesus today, what day will you make that commitment? What are you waiting to happen and think what you have to do before you fully follow Jesus?
To each of us, Jesus can say that something in our lives that has to go. We need to get on with our journey following Jesus. We may be like a nomad or a pilgrim, but we are not to be stagnant or looking back. When Jesus walked this earth he knew was to go to Jerusalem to die. A cross was waiting for him. This cross was the only one that would be for the punishment for the sins of the world. Jesus did go and die for us. He rose for us and gives us his victory over sin.
Life had adventures of all kinds of sorts. I’m not sure where I am always going, but if I’m seeing Jesus a head of me, then I know I’m doing well.