Posted in Family, fear, friends, Grace, gratitude, life, Scripture, thankful, travel, Trials

God and Waze

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and don’t lean on your own understanding.  Acknowledge Him and He will guide your steps.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Some things just don’t get old…at least not yet.  One of the modern marvels that still amazes me is the GPS units that are found in most cars today.  The fact that a satellite circling the earth at 17,500 miles per hour and at an altitude above the earth of 12,600 miles can talk to this little device on or in my dash is, well, amazing.  The fact that it can tell precisely where I am and exactly how fast I am traveling is even more amazing. All that is made possible by the actual GPS unit and the maps that are stored inside it.  But that isn’t all.

Along with the satellite and the receiver are the applications, or apps, that translate the data.  One of the most popular, and most amazing, is one called, “Waze.” What’s amazing about Waze is that it is free, and it works in conjunction with most smartphones.  What’s more amazing about Waze is that it allows users to input information about traffic and even where police might be hiding. Smile. 

Now sometimes the GPS devices just don’t get it right.  I remember one time my wife Judy and I were traveling to a funeral in another town.  When we finally arrived where the GPS told us to go…we were sitting in the middle of nowhere looking at a corn field.  I have to admit I was a little put out…as in put out in the middle of nowhere. So, there have been opportunities to throw in the towel on these little wiz-bangs…but that would be a big mistake.  You see most of the time it gets it perfectly right. Let me explain.

Last week Judy and I were traveling west on I-40 returning from a conference in North Carolina.  Waze gave us an estimated time of arrival and we were cruising.  Then, out of the blue, Waze tells me it had found a faster route and automatically rerouted us, but the funny part was the faster route was five minutes longer than the original route. “What?” I said out loud but to really no one. So anyway, it said we were to get off the interstate in four miles and I told Judy that we might as well give it a try.  I’m glad we did.

When we arrived at the designated exit, there were several cars and several semi-trucks taking the exit.  Apparently, we weren’t the only ones using Waze.  As we exited, we noticed an official truck backing up the interstate with one of those big electronic signs.  It was flashing this message, “Caution. Stopped Cars Ahead.” Hmmm I began to be very glad we exited. Soon we were on our new route that at partially paralleled the interstate where we could see cars and trucks at a complete standstill.  After a few miles, Waze had us turn right and we crossed over the interstate and there we saw the problem.  A semi-truck and several cars had collided totally shutting down the west bound lanes.  We turned left and back on to a now totally empty interstate.  My Dearest Father had used Waze, to send us a love note and had rescued us in a big, big way. He didn’t save us minutes but probably several hours.

So, what if I had said, “You know Judy, Waze has led us wrong before, how do I know it isn’t wrong this time?” In other words, what if I had ignored Waze and followed my own best plan.  Well, the answer is obvious, isn’t it?  I would have found myself stuck in a miles long traffic jam. But because, in a moment of faith and clarity, (for once) I listened to Waze and trusted it—I was rescued. How about that? And if you know anything about me from Grits, you know I don’t do traffic jams well…at all.

I know sometimes it is a hard call to know when to trust and when not to…especially when there is a chance that what we are trusting in just might fail or be wrong.  But I have good news! While a GPS might miss it sometimes, causing us to have doubts, there is a system that always gets it right.  It is, “God’s Providential System.” This one you won’t find in Best Buy, but you will find in the Bible.  The word providence means to foresee or foreknow.  And since it is God, we can have the confident assurance that He always gets it right.  We just need to trust Him because He sees what we do not.

One of my favorite verses in the Old Testament part of the Bible is found in Proverbs 3:5-6.  It says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and don’t lean on your own understanding.  Acknowledge Him and He will guide your steps.”  How awesome is that. Add to that the fact that He always has our best at His heart and that is a winning combination.  Oh sure, we can bump along the road of life without Him but if you’ve tried that you probably know it isn’t a real good idea. At least from where I sit, it makes a lot more sense to trust Him each day and in every way.  I’ve learned that Waze is a great tool but far more importantly, I’ve found that my Dearest Daddy is a great God who loves me—and you.  Oh, and, always, and I do mean always, “He’s got this.” Bro. Dewayne