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Missing the Turn

“Ahh! I think I have a flat tire. I’ll have to call you back.”

Click. I tossed my phone in the passenger seat and huffed dramatically. Why me?

I frantically gripped my wobbly steering wheel and searched for a place to pull into. The 90-degree heat only added to my crankiness; of course this would happen.

After an unpleasant morning, I decided to drive an hour to meet my husband at his workplace for lunch. With coffee and four hours of sleep, my mood was less than cheery. I’d only gotten 15 miles before my tires began losing traction. Decreasing my speed, I pulled off to the side of the highway and put my hazard lights on. I stepped out of the vehicle and checked my tire pressure. Everything appeared normal and I hadn’t lost any pressure. Puzzled, I checked a second time, relieved that I wouldn’t have to change a tire. Maybe I was just imagining the whole situation.

I got back onto the highway, and within seconds my car began making odd noises. Extremely frustrated, I called my husband to let him know about my car trouble. I’d have to cancel lunch plans and head home. He assured me that everything would be fine and to call back if any trouble arose. But the situation didn’t feel fine. I’d never broken down alone, and my car’s mysterious symptoms created unrelenting anxiety.

A blur of greenery sped past the window as I put my address into GPS. I didn’t particularly know the area well and therefore managed to get myself lost on top of car trouble. When GPS finally kicked in, relief washed over me. I was only 10 minutes from home; surely I could make it back in time. As my surroundings blended into my hectic morning, I stared off into the distance. Miles of concrete lay before me as I let my mind drift into distraction. After a couple minutes I glanced down at my GPS, only to notice I’d missed my turn several miles back. Frustration seeped into my veins as I gripped the steering wheel tighter, determined to make the next turn. Yet, every time the familiar road sign appeared, I managed to miss my turn . . . five times! I became so frazzled and distracted that I kept driving past the right road. Overwhelmed, I whispered a silent prayer and asked God to keep me focused and ease my frustration. After 45 minutes of driving, I finally made the correct turn that led straight home.

In our spiritual journey, we often miss the mark. We rely on ourselves and lose our way in the process. I’ve found that despite my constant failure, I’m somewhat reluctant to let God lead the way. I continue to think “my way is best,” all the while missing the correct turn. But despite my human weakness, I’m thankful for a Heavenly Father that gently leads me in the right direction when I rely on Him for guidance.

“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps” (Proverbs 16:9, NIV).

Madeleine Temple-Lowe writes from Indiana.

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About Madeleine Temple-Lowe

Madeleine Temple-Lowe

writes from the midwest.

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