The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. (Proverbs 16:9 ESV)
We often head south on the I-5 to catch flights out of Seattle and the trip takes us over several old metal bridges. A few days after we left home on one of our latest trips, we heard the news that a bridge we had crossed countless times had collapsed. Thankfully, no one was killed or seriously injured.
But . . . we still had to get home.
And I only knew of the one route!
I tried to relax and not obsess about how on earth we were going to get home but I was a bit concerned. Thankfully, there was another route! It snaked through the back woods and was certainly different. It involved crossing a wooden bridge that was old and rickety. Quite a difference from the solid, strong metal truss bridge we were used to and had trusted for years. What was typically an hour and a half trip now took us on an hour longer tour. The constant turns and bumpy roads were beginning to make me feel sick and there were next to zero road signs and markers. I imagined how hard it would have been to take this trip in a horse and carriage (which was probably the era when the bridge and road were designed).
Sometimes detours in our lives can make us question what on earth is going on. We long for the straight highways marked with large, clear signs telling us where we are. We want the safe, familiar route that we know well. But there are seasons when God calls us out from our ‘normal’ and takes us to where He knows we need to be. These back roads can be inconvenient . . . but we need to trust Him. He sees the precarious bridges and obstacles that may be in our path, and is there to help us navigate them … if we let Him.
Father, we thank You that You keep your eyes on your children and that You establish safe steps for us. Help us to learn to relax and not fight You when You need to take us on strange, unexpected routes. In Jesus’ name, Amen.