My Musing – I suppose we all had a destination in mind when we began adulthood. But less frequently do we consider what kind of journey might be required to get us there. Take marriage for instance. When we say for better or worse we think only of the better, giving little thought of the worse parts of the journey that may be required to get us to the better. Or for richer or poorer, of course we may have to go through some lean times in the beginning of the journey, but we have our eyes fixed on the ultimate richer. And don’t even get me started on in sickness or in health.
But marriage is just one example of many life’s journeys. In today’s musing, let’s briefly consider four heroes of the faith whose journeys may not have been exactly how they would have planned them. But they were necessary in order to arrive at the destination that God intended for them all along.
The Long and Winding Road
Getting to the Root of the Matter
Destination (a place to which one is journeying or sent), destiny (course of events held to be arranged by a superhuman power [God]) and destined (to direct, devise, or set apart for a specific place or purpose) all share the same root word. Each or these people were journeying to a specific destination because they had been set apart for a specific time, a specific place and a specific purpose. In each case, the course of events that transpired on their journey were planned by God and were necessary in order to produce the results that God desired.
Application – We all encounter journeys on the way to our desired destinations in life that we do not plan. We might call them detours. Often they are inconvenient, irritating, annoying, or downright unpleasant. When this happens (and it will), maybe we would be better off asking why not instead of why me? Maybe we are destined for a time such as this. Maybe it will serve to advance the Gospel. Maybe it is not a detour after all, maybe it is the intended path that God is sending us down. Maybe (likely) God intends it for good. So again, ask why not instead of why me?
My Advice – Actually it’s Paul’s advice:
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:12, NIV 1978)
As children of God, we have more than a hope that we’ll get to the destination of God’s choosing, and that should give us joy. If on the journey we encounter afflictions, we can be patient because we are confident that God remains in control and is directing our path to the right destination. Nevertheless, the journey may be long and difficult, so we must remain faithful in our prayers that God’s will be done.