A detour

shutterstock_390642253How often have we embarked on a journey, typically a road trip and planned the entire route?  We checked Google maps and found the most direct path to our destination along with the time it would take to complete.  These days we can add stops along the way, restaurants, coffee shops, whatever we need can be all planned for in advance.  We’re packed and ready to hit the road and everything seems to have fallen into place and we start out … away we go.

A short time into our drive Google maps shows red lines indicating there is bumper to bumper traffic ahead and it just added 20 minutes to our drive.  We stay with it and figure it will clear up.  But as we drive instead of the time shortening, Google maps adds more time to the arrival clock.  Traffic is getting worse.  We think it must be a serious accident.  What do we do?  Detour?  We decide on an alternate route.

Being unfamiliar with the area we rely heavily on maps, GPS, satellites, phone call to a friend that may know the area, anything that can get us closer to our destination even if it means backtracking or going in a different direction and getting off the main road … the road we had planned all along.  Sometimes we decide the best course of action is to just pull over and stop or get off at the next exit and find a restaurant and wait it out.

Today we decide to take a detour.  We’re being directed in a direction away from our destination but we can see that it eventually gets us there just in a long roundabout way.  Its going to take a lot longer to get to where we wanted to go but we decide our destination is worth the detour.

Once on the detour route, we are taken down this small winding highway that is very unique.  Beautiful pastures of greenery and sunflowers with daisies mixed in.  How could we have missed this?  All of the sudden we start to feel that the detour was a great idea even though its not what we planned on. We are mesmerized by the beauty that unfolds before us as we make our way down this slow winding road that doesn’t seem to have a lot of travelers on it.

We continue our journey feeling good about the detour when we come up on a tight turn and notice the trees start to thicken. As we drive they get taller and taller to the point of obscuring the sunlight.  The road isn’t as smooth as it was at the start of the detour.

Which Way

We come to a crossroad and our GPS is telling us to take what seems to be a small dirt road.  Another detour? What do we do?  Do we trust Google Maps?  Do we trust our GPS in the car?

There is no phone signal here so we can’t call anyone.  Fear starts to creep in.  We start to question our decision about the detour and maybe the whole trip and we start to think we should have gone back.

 

We pause for a moment, take a deep breath as if to let out a sigh and trust that God will make sure we are safe.  We take the small dirt road as indicated by the GPS with some hesitation.

We proceed slowly.  We’re unsure of this road as it is laden with some pot holes and debris on the sides.  As we drive further it seems to get darker.  We find ourselves in the middle of a thick, dense forest with trees as high as the sky itself.

As unsure as we are, we keep moving forward.  Part of us is still weary of where we are let alone if we will get to the other side safely.  Our family starts questioning us.  They are complaining about how long this is taking.  The whining starts and the “you should have’s” ensue.  Crap! This is not going well.

You do your best to block the voices and negativity but you must admit they’re affecting you and your energy is being zapped.  You take another deep breath and quietly pray for guidance.

As you continue you start to see light at the end of this dark tunnel.  You know in your heart that this is going to work out so you continue with hope and faith.  You even find yourself picking up the pace and drive faster.  A few minutes more and the light gets brighter.  The road seems to have fewer turns and the pavement is smoothing out.  We keep pressing on and the trees pull back to reveal a beautiful blue sky.  We continue…   We now find ourselves on higher ground overlooking the beautiful land ahead of us.  We can see for miles.  Wow, what a scene. We notice a small town in the distance nestled up against a massive body of water and decide this is our next stop.

shutterstock_490196845We end up in a place we’ve only read about in books. An “Old Town America” type town.  Pretty little town with perfectly manicured streets, lined with shops, alley’s with hidden café’s, restaurants … we start to wonder why we ever questioned what we were doing.  We laugh at ourselves because of the fear we sensed.  This is exactly what we were looking for. The perfect spot on our journey and now realize the detour was the best thing that could have happened to us.

Isn’t that how life is overall?  How often do we plan and set goals and know exactly what we want and where we are going and then come across obstacles that force us to change direction?  Take a detour from our original path.    The GPS and maps can be likened to our Guides, God, Universe that are always there showing us the way and all we have to do is listen and trust.

We allow fear to set in. We question the detours, the choices and the road ahead of us and lose sight of our goals and direction.  We often think that going in a different direction will not get us what we want and so we force the path we’re on.  We stay the course even though it may be unpassable or worse, we decide to wait. We stall.  We start to let fear hijack our feelings and emotions and often times we decide to go back home and not take the journey at all.  How sad is that?

I share this because this has happened to me on many occasions.  I have back-tracked and allowed fear to set in and immobilize me.  I’ve learned the hard way that I needed to embrace the detours.

Let’s drive by faith, hope and KNOWING that we are always guided AND protected.  I talk about this “KNOWING” in another blog and quote Wayne Dyer “… an immediate and almost overpowering sensation within me that I had actually created my own future by having such a strong knowing …”

When it seems things are not going our way, stop, meditate, ask for guidance, LISTEN and let God guide us.  We cannot go wrong because even if we end up where didn’t plan on being, it often turns out to be the perfect spot.

Gotta love those detours … Gotta love this life.

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