There are two things that can derail you in your walk through this life. Think of it like taking a trip. You have to know where you are and you have to know where you are going. You would be surprised how many people are going through life and can’t tell you where they are or where they are headed. It seems simple and it most certainly is, but most of us spend little time thinking on these two subjects. Instead we are simply positioned and lead by external forces. Wherever the wind is blowing is where you will find me type of thing.
Where you are matters. If you don’t know where you are, how will you ever get to where you are going? If you go on to any gps device, it has to have a starting point. It’s got to know where you are starting from. Where exactly are you? Because of you think you are in one place, but you are actually in another, guess what? You won’t get to where you want to be. You have to know where you are starting from. Some people are scared to know where they are starting from. Why is that? Because you have to admit that you aren’t where you want to be.
There is a confession in the fact that you haven’t “arrived.” And for some of us, this is a hard confession to make. We’ve spent most of our lives trying to prove to others that we have arrived, that we know what we are doing. We spend most of our lives not being honest with ourselves that we haven’t arrived. Confession is good for the soul. You need to be honest with the fact that you aren’t where you want to be. If you can admit that, then you can start to be honest about discovering where you are.
In discovering where you are, you need to have clarity of thought. If your thoughts are clouded and lost in the fog, you won’t be able to see the markers telling you where you are. I see this a lot with people who think they are farther down the road than they actually are. They know which road they are on, but they are simply confused with how far they have to go. When looking honestly at ourselves, we have to come to the realization that we may actually have a long ways to go in improving ourselves or in our walk with God. We need to be able to read those road signs.
Road signs in life can be many things, but in this context, I want you to think about character traits. Where do you see peace in your life? Or do you see it at all? That’s a road sign. Where are you patient? And where do you lack patience? These are all road markers to show you where you are and once you know where you are, you can start the process of mapping out where you are headed.
But where are you headed? That’s the second thing you need to know. You have to know where you are going in life. You need to have a vision, a purpose, a plan. There seems to be two different types of people in this arena – those who know where they are going and are driven by their desire to get there and those who have no idea where they are going and don’t seem to have much motivation to get moving.
There is an old saying, “if you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there.” Basically, if you don’t know where you are going, it means you aren’t going anywhere. You need to have a vision for your life, family and work. Where does God want to take you? How does He want to use you? How does He want to use your family? There are all important questions. And if you don’t have the answer to those, it doesn’t matter what road you are on, you won’t get where you are going.
A couple of points for the journey:
- Define – You need to know clearly where you are and where you are going. That starts with definitions. Defining things helps bring clarity.
- Discover – Take some time to learn about the path. If you take the time to learn about the path, you may discover a better way.
- Deduct – Take away distractions from your life. There is no use in traveling down every rabbit trail. You need to remove distractions so your path is made clear.
- Decide – One of the hardest things in life is sometimes just making a decision. You can’t stand at the crossroads forever. Decide which path is the right one and get moving!
- Detours – Once you make a decision, guess what? Sometimes you will discover that you took the wrong path. That’s OK. Some of the best parts of life is found in the detours. If you know where you are, a detour isn’t scary.
- Dead Ends – Sometimes you just have to admit there is no way to get where you are going because you have headed in the wrong direction. It’s time to start over and get going in the right direction. There is nothing wrong with dead ends, but there is something wrong in continuing in the wrong direction!
- Delight – This is a journey. Let your journey be filled with joy. Life is too short to allow stress in anxiety over this journey derail your joy. “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4).”
“You will make known to me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.”