Life is a Journey

road tripLife is a journey, or so they say. I’ve accepted that mantra to be true most of my life. I didn’t really question it since it just made sense to me. But I have recently given this a lot of thought and what I discovered was that life really is a journey. Or more precisely, a road trip journey.

I went on a road trip last weekend and as the landscape outside my window passed by I saw this in complete clarity. When you go on a road trip you pack light enough that all of your stuff fits in the car.

We seem to have the same problem every time we pack for a road trip. Too. Much. Stuff! The good rule of thumb when preparing for a road trip is to pack light so traveling is more comfortable. How many of you have ever set out on a long cross-country journey with a vehicle that was so packed tight that you couldn’t even move without  jostling something or someone? I have! It makes for a very unpleasant trip!

So for this journey of life that we are all on, remember to pack light. So much of the things in our life are clutter. I think we can all recognize that if we’re honest.  What about emotional baggage? I’m talking about those hurts and internalized feelings that we don’t want to let go of? They can haunt and harass us with every bump in the road just like a car stuffed to the brim! And just like a car that is way too full can obstruct our view of the road, so can too much emotional baggage keep us from living our lives the way we were meant to.  We were never created to carry the burdens of the world on our shoulders. We were created to hand those burdens off to God and trust Him with our lives.

So now that the car is lightened just a bit we can set off on our journey. However, without a clear map telling us where to go we could end up in Las Angeles when the goal was to get to New York! That’s when a good GPS comes in handy.  Without a clear path to the destination we desire, we could end up anywhere. We will be doomed to wander aimlessly.  Yes, we can drive on the roads and find ourselves in a city or town that may or may not serve the purpose we set out to accomplish. But is that the best thing for our lives?

In this life, we have a road map that was given to us, called the Bible. If we live our lives according to what it says we are following the best GPS ever made! If we don’t use the Bible to guide our footsteps we will stray from the best that God designed us to be. His plan and His purpose is found by making the Bible the engine that we run on and the GPS that guides us.

Now we know where we are going and we have a plan. As we travel it is amazing to notice the different types of roads that one can travel on. Sometimes we traverse country roads that are so picturesque they belong on a postcard.  This kind of driving is peaceful and soothing. But when you merge onto a racing freeway with semi-trucks and speeding cars the adrenaline goes up and you start gripping the steering wheel just a big tighter. What about construction zones and speed bumps that jar your teeth?

Life is so much like this. At times it is peaceful and everything is going your way. Those are the times you wish would never end. Then something unexpected happens and you find yourself rushing to keep up with the hectic pace you have to keep. Let’s not forget those construction zones that can waylay us and send us on a detour we did not see coming! A sudden death of a loved one can seem like you just drove off a cliff and crashed at the bottom of a ravine. Any number of difficult circumstances can send you in a direction you never wanted to go but are helpless to change course. The one truth I discovered was that if you just keep moving you will eventually find yourself on a smooth road once again. Not all pot holes can be avoided but how you recover after the jarring sensation is up to you. If you get a flat tire… change it and keep going. If you run out of gas…Go to the source of your gas, God, and He will fill you up and get you back on the road.

The last truth I want to leave you with is this. When we are on a road trip we are not at home. I have done a lot of traveling over my lifetime. And there is one thing that is a constant. It is always exciting to go on a journey but it is so much more exciting to return home. The exhilarating feeling of stepping into my own bedroom and collapsing on my own bed is beyond describing. I know when I am on the road that I am not at home. When I sleep in a hotel I don’t unpack my bags. I know I’m only staying a set amount of time and then I will be going home.

This world is not my home. I am a traveler in a strange land. My home is in the distance and there will be a party to welcome me when I finally get there.  So don’t get so comfortable as you sojourn this life. No amount of souvenirs or trinkets will make the trip. There is only one thing that you can take with you; your relationship with Jesus and the relationship with the people that God has entrusted you with. How many souls are going to be joining you because you were faithful to share the hope and life found only in Jesus? What are you spending your time gathering and collecting? Is it trinkets and baubles?  Or is it the souls of the lost finding life?

Make your life count for something that has eternal significance because you only get one chance. When your time is up you will stand before God and all of the fluff of this world will be left behind.  You will stand before your maker and give an account of how you traveled the roads of this life.

Life really is a journey. It’s a road trip journey filled with twists, turns, highs, lows, potholes, construction and even accidence. Life is a journey with our real home as the destination. Where will you call home when your time is up? Without Jesus as your copilot your end destination is a place filled with torment for all time.

Life really is a journey. Make sure you end up in the destination you truly desire.

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