Journey to Northwest Washington State; passions as desolate as this West Texas road. Miles and miles of cotton fields, mesquite trees, tumbleweeds and oil derricks. Hypnotized by passing white lines, my mind drifted into autopilot. Suddenly it was apparent I had taken a wrong turn (not a “wrong toin at Albikoiky” but not far off). I knew where I was going or so I thought. A metaphor of my life as of late.

My electronic “driving companion” redirected down a two lane county road past farms and fields, blacktop and red dirt. Arriving at a crossroads, a sign read Redeemed Sinners – Saved by Grace. Welch Texas, population 222, screamed my name when I was lost in the middle of nowhere. Metaphors, metaphors, metaphors.

Returning to the highway, I no longer dreaded the 1,800 miles ahead, but embraced the mile ahead in my vision (or 100 miles in New Mexico). The Southwestern plains were smoothed by the palms of God, the badlands formed by His hands as if dancing across piano keys and the majestic sculptures of Utah show the tracing of His fingertips. The grandeur was overwhelming as I tried to embrace every inch that passed my way. Colorado, Utah, Idaho, Oregon, each a magnificent canvas within themselves.

Entering through the mountains of southern Washington, I stopped to refuel in Kennewick. Passing a beautiful restaurant built of barn-wood and stone with a magnificent stained glass church window, there appeared a flagpole supported by steel beams. The sculpture was actual steel recovered from the World Trade Center Towers, a monument dedicated to those who perished and those who survived. As I approached, a feeling of reverence encompassed the circular benches and garden beyond, a silence in the midst of traffic passing the rusted, fire-torn steel, unnoticed to most. A touch of a melted edge echoed in my soul that there is a bigger world out there and struggles much greater than my own.

Perhaps these detours were not as “unplanned” as I thought.

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. Matthew 7:7-8

Ask, seek and knock.

Lord, when I am so focused on the path ahead that I fail to see, please open my eyes to the beauty of Your creation, the gentle leading of Your Mighty Hands and the blessings of Your immeasurable Grace.

Amen …


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