by Froswa’ Booker-Drew
Driving to the Austin area is something I can do with my eyes closed. Jumping on I-35 is very familiar and comfortable. Even without a GPS, I know where I’m going.
On this visit, I traveled to some areas that required my GPS. Without hesitation, I trusted the map to take me to the desired locations.
On my way back home, I selected the fastest route as an option. I believed that the GPS would take me on the familiar stretch of road, I-35. Without any trepidation, I followed the path. Initially, I thought I was going out of the way just for a bit to avoid traffic but when I found myself on isolated county roads, I became concerned.
It was especially frightening when the police blocked off the path I was supposed to take, and I had to go another way that was even more remote. I was traveling through farm areas that had no housing nearby and towns that had less than a thousand residents.
I did not see anyone who looked like me. As a Black woman traveling these backroads with little descriptors to tell others where I was, I endured a lot of anxiety.
As the map brought me closer to I-35, I became elated. Where I thought I was headed initially became closer to my reach.
When I approached the access road for the highway, I had not only avoided traffic through Austin, but these backroads took me almost 100 miles around the major highway. I still reached my destination, but it wasn’t the way I wanted to go or planned when I started this trip.
I learned so much from this experience about walking with God:
- Blind faith only lasts so long. I trusted the GPS without paying attention to the route. Many of us trust God because it’s tradition. Grandma did it. Momma made you go to church. It was the thing to do on Sundays. The danger in this is that you are relying on someone else’s experience instead of building your own relationship with God. If you don’t have a relationship with God, when life gets tough, it is easy to walk away. You haven’t developed your personal walk—you’ve relied on tradition and not God’s truth.
- “Therefore, hear the parable of the sower:…This is he who received seed by the wayside. But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles. Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful,” Matthew 13:3-23.
- God will take you places that you didn’t imagine. On the start of my trip, I had no idea that I would travel through places I had never seen or even heard of. I reached my destination, but going through that experience reminded me that we always want control. But when we ask God to order our steps, we must be prepared to go places that take us down roads that are often uncomfortable and even unfamiliar.
- “I will lead blind Israel down a new path, guiding them along an unfamiliar way. I will brighten the darkness before them and smooth out the road ahead of them. Yes, I will indeed do these things; I will not forsake them,” Isaiah 42:16.
- Despite my fear, my faith reminded me that God was there with me. Even in my moments of feeling so alone in the middle of nowhere, God was present. “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged,” Deuteronomy 6:8.
- Your road to travel in life might be lonely. “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it,” Matthew 7:13-14).
No matter how much uncertainty you are facing as you travel through life, know that God is in control and will bring you over, through, and out to the other side. Do your part: trust, believe, and watch God work.