“Sometimes God sends angels to pick up your car and put it where you need to be,” my husband observed after a recent adventure where I looked for a new place, the roads had different names, and I got to the right place but have no idea how it happened.
So, today, as I took a road trip with 4 teens to a place I visited one time 2 years ago and successfully managed to get us wandering residential neighborhoods instead of a college campus, I was nervous. But I had my SmartPhone, so if I got lost, the mapping would help. Even so, I scoped out maps, and my husband printed out 7 different views of maps to help me get them to the conference on time, without our losing our way.
This morning, I was still nervous and turned off my phone to conserve battery power until I need it. (Translated: when I got lost.) As we started, I warned our other teen passengers, “One thing. Sometimes when I’m on road trips and merge into busy highways, I have chats with Jesus where I ask him to help me find a spot for my car. It works, and I don’t have problems when I do that. So if you hear one of my chats, you know what I’m doing.” Then I reminded them if how Nik Wallenda had a chat with Jesus while he walked the highwire over Niagara Falls. I told them my conversations sound a little like that.
Then, half an hour into our drive, I realized I didn’t have my phone. My son searched for it and couldn’t find it. He called home, and it was lying on the kitchen table, where I had left it.
The others, perhaps hearing of my spatial challenges, thought we would turn around. I wasn’t wasting an hour’s gas and running teens late because of my bad sense of direction. So my son took the maps folder my husband organized, played shotgun, and we didn’t get lost a single time. I heard that still, quiet voice inside telling me, “You need to walk by faith, not by sight.” OK fine. Hope that lasted when I did get lost.
I was still worried about my solo drive home – it was 4 hours, which is plenty of time to make wrong turns and end up in the wrong state. This was the first time since our vacation a little over a year ago when my husband deliberately took us far enough into the Smokies that I had no cell phone reception that I couldn’t check any electronic media for an entire day.
As the drive began, I heard the still, quiet voice again – I needed to walk by faith, not by Smartphone. Sometimes, I get so dependent on the memory in my phone that I forget to use my own brain. As I ate lunch alone, I remembered 25 years ago when I wandered Ireland, Scotland, and England alone, with no cell phone. At least once, I went a week without contacting anyone back home or at school who knew me and thought nothing of it.
How times have changed that now a 4 hour car ride untethered feels odd.
When I got home, I reconnected, just like the Borg would re-attach to the collective. But perhaps, I remembered that there is a place for faith and gut instinct.
Maybe we all need a little more faith.