What is more trying of anyone’s patience than driving through continual road work? We are all in a hurry, but we still have to break when we come up against a backed up one-lane highway etc. Besides the frustration of having to slow down, there is the dread of approaching a sign which reads: DETOUR. A longer route to get to our destination.
What about personal detours? Aren’t they more challenging? A man by the name of Keith Bordeaux experienced a shocking detour. He wrote about it in a collaborative little book called Winds of Heaven, Stuff of Earth–Spiritual Conversations Inspired by the life & lyrics of Rich Mullins.
After befriending singer/songwriter Rich Mullins, Keith and Rich started hanging out. During this time, they took a trip to New Mexico, where Keith learned of Rich’s passion regarding economically impoverished Native Americans. After Keith heard Rich’s desire to start an after-school music program and a summer camp there, he was asked to become a part of the vision. Listen to Keith tell the rest of the story:
“When I returned from the trip, I immediately turned in my notice to the booking agency; I was going to go work with Rich. Five days later, he was killed. The sudden loss of a new mentor, friend and opportunity was devastating. I was confused and wondered why God had brought me to this point, only to rip the carpet out from underneath me.” A detour.
Before I started working in the Disability Insurance industry for over 19 years, I remember the day I got a call from the CFO (Chief Financial Officer) at a former employer of a nationally known photography company. Previously, I had said yes to their offer to come on board after they interviewed me seven times. Since I had only been employed there for about six weeks, I was still in training.
One day, one of my peers interrupted the training class and informed me I had a phone call. I was told I needed to come to the office pronto. When I arrived at the CFO’s office, I was also greeted by a woman from HR. I sat down and the CFO said, “You are not a good fit.” Another detour.
Tony Evans says from his book Detours, “We would never plan chaos and detours into our life on purpose. And yet that seems to be God’s modus operandi-His default mode for guiding us.”
Bordeaux shares some final wisdom from looking back at his detour, “For nearly two decades now, I have worked on behalf of children living in poverty all over the world through Compassion, and this work has been one of the greatest joys of my life. I will always thank God that He used Rich Mullins to divert my path along the way.”
As you face life’s constantly changing diversions, what is your reference point? Hebrews 13: 8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.” Why not let Him direct the traffic?
pictures courtesy of “Nelson & His Nikon”