Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.Proverbs 3:5 (NLT)
If you have ever driven around the downtown of any major city you know the headaches it can bring. In particular, those headaches can be brought on by the miracle of modern engineering called one-way streets. On a one-way grid, you have to figure out how to turn left or right onto another street when the signs say you can’t. So, round and round the block you go – often times turning left three times so you can go right one time. (For those of you who don’t drive yet, just wait. Your time will come. Then you’ll understand.)
I found myself in just such a situation in downtown Seattle. I had a van full of teens, as we were heading to a worship conference hosted in that city. I was trying to get us to the hotel we were staying in for the weekend, but my phone’s GPS couldn’t locate it. (This was a decade ago, Google maps was not nearly as reliable then.) Eventually, I spotted the sign for the hotel and turned down the street heading in that direction. I heard gasps and a bunch of nervous “ummmmmms” coming from the back seat. I passed cars heading in the opposite direction and the drivers looked at me like I was crazy. Yup. I turned down a one-way street, heading the wrong direction. The students were laughing and saying things like, “Didn’t you see that giant ‘Do Not Enter’ sign back there?” Uh, no. I did not.
Driving a vehicle in unknown territory can be tricky. But, navigating life is even more complex. In addition to trying to choose from the millions of paths we can take (school, friends, career, spouse, house, etc.) there is a supernatural world all around us. One side of that world is trying to keep us safe, while the other is trying to destroy us. Additionally, we’re sinners with a flawed brain. As a result, always making the right choices on our own is impossible.
This is why King Solomon penned these words, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.” Only Jesus can see the warning signs. Only He knows how to navigate the craziness of the maze of paths before us. Only Jesus knows where home is. Therefore, only Jesus can lead us there.
So, today, and every day, lay down your own understanding of the world, of life, of God, and put your trust in His directions. He’ll never steer you wrong.