This past Sunday we heard the incredibly inspiring testimony of Dinesh Chand, a missionary living in Northern India. There were many points to his message that resonated, but one particular point has stuck with me all week. It was derived from a conversation that he had with a local cab driver, and his telling of this story created an "ah-ha" moment for many of us in the congregation.
As some of you who have traveled in third world regions know, driving is not necessarily regulated. Signs, signals and road markings are mere suggestions. One day, Dinesh found himself in a taxi and couldn't help but notice how the driver completely ignored the lane markings on the city road. So he asked the driver, "Do you know what those lines are for?" The driver gave this question careful consideration and after several moments of thinking about it, he said, "I think they were left over by the British". For starters, that's actually pretty funny, but there is also a valuable analogy in this perspective.
While driving, we are provided with clear markings and instructions to better ensure our safety and efficiency. However, if we are unaware of what they mean, then they are of little value. At times we might stay inside the lines, (perhaps like the saying, "even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in a while"), but this is likely not intentional or purposeful. So just as often we drift, unaware of the greater danger.
Now think about the markings, signs and signals that God has provided us through His word and our personal relationship with Him. If we are aware and make it a priority to follow these paths, then we stay closer to His will and enjoy His blessings and the security of His promises. If we are unaware and begin to live outside of these lines, or if we should intentionally drift beyond His direction, we often face the consequences and fail to live in the joy and peace that was intended for us to experience.
Keep running with horses, just keep it between the lines!
The Lord will guide you continually, giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring. - Isaiah 58:11