When I was in college, I studied abroad for a semester in London. One thing I learned was how to navigate a big city using public transportation. I’m what you might call directionally challenged. For me, getting around in a foreign country was stressful. Whenever I needed to go anywhere, I would spend lots of time checking bus and train schedules. I was careful to look up the times for both my way to and from wherever I was headed before ever leaving my dorm room.
After about a month of that, I started to really get the hang of it. I could hop on a train or bus like any local. I didn’t even need to look up bus and train schedules anymore! I was a pro!
One weekend, I took a trip to Oxford to explore a new place. Being the public transportation expert that I was, I didn’t look up any bus or train information because I knew exactly what I was doing. Or so I thought.
On Sunday as I got on the first of two buses that would take me home, I thought everything was fine. It wasn’t until I reached the empty bus station that I realized I should have checked the schedules. As it turns out, the buses stop around 6 p.m. on Sundays. I was stuck somewhere between Oxford and home.
I didn’t bother to read the schedules. I didn’t bother to be careful because I was so sure of my way. I ended up shelling out almost 60 pounds (which is over 100 U.S. dollars) to take a cab home that night.
This reminds me of Proverbs 3, where we’re told to trust in the Lord and not on our own understanding—God will show us what path to take. I didn’t let the train schedule or bus schedule direct my way; I relied on my own understanding. Sometimes I’m like that with my faith. I think I know what I’m doing and try to make my own way, without relying on God’s plan for my life. Without fail, it turns out a disaster. It ends with me being hopelessly lost, just like that day in England.
God is more than capable of leading us. When we put aside our own human understanding, and truly let go of our own path, we discover a deeper relationship with the God who is leading us down the only way that matters; his path.
by Susan Gali
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Father, help me today to have the courage to rely fully on you with all of my plans and paths. Amen.