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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