“Avoid it, do not travel on it;
Turn away from it and pass on.”
So I went to a gathering of friends a few weeks ago. The hostess’ house is about 20 minutes up the freeway ~ a pleasant drive when it’s not a busy time of day, which was the case this time. I went for dinner, and left for home about 10:00 at night ~ far from rush hour, right? And I got most of the way home without anything unusual happening. But just before the off-ramp that I take to get home, I saw one of those dreaded orange CalTrans signs, but this one said something I’d never seen before. It said, “Right 4 lanes closed.”
Yes, you read that right. Four lanes! You gotta be kidding me!
How many lanes are there on that stretch of freeway, you ask? Five. And though there aren’t a crazy number of cars on the freeway at 10:00 at night, there are enough that if you take five lanes down to one, you’re gonna get a traffic jam.
Now remember, I was only one off-ramp away from where I wanted to be, so of course I could just get off at the next exit and easily find my way home. But it took me 30 minutes to do that.
Thirty minutes, to go 1/4 mile. Good thing I had some great tunes playin’! But I kept thinking two things. First of all, I thought in the general direction of CalTrans: “Why didn’t you tell me??” If I’d had a warning a half a mile sooner, I could have gotten off one exit before mine, and been home in a reasonable amount of time. I know my way around the area; I had options; I just didn’t know I needed them.
My other repeating thought was: “I was almost to my exit! I was so close!” Which of course sort of translates to, “Why didn’t you close the lanes a little bit south of here, and inconvenience the people getting off at that exit?” Which is not really the most Christian of attitudes, admittedly…
Detours happen on the road of life. And they take all different forms.
Some take us far away from the road we were planning on.
Some, like mine, don’t take us that much further that what we intended, but can cause a significant delay in getting there.
Sometimes we get a warning, but there’s still nothing we can to do prevent the deviation.
Sometimes we get little or no warning, and we find we are unable to avail ourselves of options we knew we had.
Maybe the best advice is, first of all, to know that the plans we make are subject to change. Second, be as prepared as you can be. Then just trust Him, and keep moving forward. You are never alone.