We had the privilege of taking two of our grandchildren on an outing to one of our favorite spots this past summer. We carefully planned the departure time so that we would arrive at our destination early, be the first ones into the animal park, beat the crowd, avoid the heat of mid-day, and afford the kiddos the opportunity to feed all those hungry critters early in the morning. That well-thought-out plan went awry fairly early in the day, with one unexpected road sign. Detour! Ugh, the bridge between point A and point B was closed for repair, now we would have to zigzag through half of the alphabet to get to point B. My husband accepted the plan disruption and maze-like detour with his typical patience and composure. I, on the other hand, was not at all pleased with the wrench thrown into my perfectly planned itinerary.
After Israel was miraculously freed from the bondage of Egypt by the mighty hand of God, they embarked on a journey to the promised land of Canaan. Egypt has been their temporary home for quite a while, “…the sojourning of the children of Israel…was four hundred and thirty years.” Think of that, freedom was finally theirs after enduring 430 years of taskmasters and slavery! The tales of the land of Abraham had been passed down for years, from generation to generation, and the time was at hand, finally they had the real hope of seeing that land of milk and honey with their own eyes. But in the midst of their excitement, God sent a detour. They would not be traveling the shortest route between points A (Egypt) and point B (Canaan), the well-traveled merchant route “…through the way of the land of the Philistines…” Oh no, detour alert! God would lead them “…through the way of the wilderness of the Red Sea.” The Lord assured them that even though this would be a difficult path to travel, unfamiliar, covering miles of barren land, He would go before them, leading every step of the way with His own presence.
None of us enjoy those alternative routes, roads that hinder or change what is obviously the most direct path, at least to our human eyes. But unexpected events, such as illness, pink slips, relocating, family additions, new jobs, deaths, and disappointments often detour our plans. We may be baffled by the GPS change, but God is not taken by surprise at all. He has sent a course correction to keep us on His path, not ours. When steering through the unfamiliar territory of detours, we have to pay strict attention to the signs and trust the sign-makers. Similarly, when God sends a detour, it just may render us a tad less dependent on ourselves and more dependent on Him. And who knows, that detour may be the more scenic route, as we walk hand-in-hand with our Father.
Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
Lord, when You send a detour, please lead the way through that uncharted territory. Help me to patiently follow You, especially when my well-laid-out plans are not Yours.<div class='sharedaddy sd-block sd-like jetpack-likes-widget-wrapper jetpack-likes-widget-unloaded' id='like-post-wrapper-164683012-873-62bc031ab1fca' data-src='https://widgets.wp.com/likes/#blog_id=164683012&post_id=873&origin=wordpress.grandmasgleanings.com&obj_id=164683012-873-62bc031ab1fca' data-name='like-post-frame-164683012-873-62bc031ab1fca' data-title='Like or Reblog'><h3 class="sd-title">Like this:</h3><div class='likes-widget-placeholder post-likes-widget-placeholder' style='height: 55px;'><span class='button'><span>Like</span></span> <span class="loading">Loading...</span></div><span class='sd-text-color'></span><a class='sd-link-color'></a></div>