One of the first purchases I made after the death of my husband was a GPS. I have always been directionally challenged, but never needed to be concerned about that because my husband was great at finding our way around even before a GPS was ever available.
On Thanksgiving afternoon I made what was to have been a 1 1/2 drive alone from one place to another. Now I had made this same drive a few days earlier. I programmed my destination into my GPS and began to listen to the voice as it gave me directions. I noticed immediately that I was not taking the same route that I had taken earlier. My first thought was that perhaps the GPS knew something that I didn’t know and I continued on in the direction that it was taking me.
I felt some fear and trepidation as I drove on roads through Pennsylvania that I had never seen before. I had a choice to make. Either I could trust that this little device knew where it was taking me or I could turn around and try to find my way back using the route that I had taken a few days before. The problem with turning around was that it was going to add more time to my drive and I wanted to get to my destination before dark. So, I decided that I would continue on this new destination that I was given trusting that it was the right one. Despite the uncertainty that I was feeling, I also felt peace that I was not alone in this journey because God has promised that He will never leave me nor forsake me.
Because I spend so much of my time as a widow alone, I am able to better hear and recognize when God is showing me something. Many times when my mind is going and I find myself with another question, a verse that I have learned will pop into my mind giving me the answer to my question. Then there are other times that I am fully aware of God using something to make Himself real to me. This was one of those times and as I was driving along those back country roads of PA not knowing where I was or where exactly my GPS was taking me, the thought came to me that this is just how I am supposed to be trusting God.
Why do I find it harder to trust that God is working everything out for good in my life than I do to trust that my GPS is taking me where I need to go? That’s the question that I was asking myself as I was driving. Why is it easier for me to trust a man-made machine than an all-knowing Almighty God who created me with a specific plan for my life? Why I am so afraid to completely trust that His plan is the very best for me?
When I first got my GPS, I found it hard to really trust it because I like to know my destination. I like to know in advance and have experience with knowing exactly where I am going. It was difficult for me to sit back as I was driving, give control over to a little machine, and take one step at a time toward an unknown destination. I find that this is just as hard for me in life – especially now that I have no life partner going through this journey with me. It is God and me and I can’t physically see God.
The longer I use my GPS, the more I am learning to trust it and the longer I walk alone with God, the more I am learning about trusting Him. Losing three of the dearest people in my life – my husband and both parents – has stripped me of my co-dependency on them forcing me to become dependent on God and God alone.
What has God used in your life as a widow to teach you some new things?