No Sense of Direction

Short road trips – back in the day….

People often ask me for directions. This is a source of great amusement in our family because I was born with no sense of direction. In fact, if I say that I think we should turn left, turning right is probably the correct option. Yet, it never fails that strangers will approach me and ask for directions.

  • Phil and I were in Poland and on two occasions Polish people approached me and asked directions. Our interpreter intervened and told them I was American. They looked quite surprised.
  • I was riding public transportation in Chicago to attend our daughter’s soccer game at the University of Chicago and a young woman asked me which bus she should take to …… Of course I had no idea – just a little piece of paper where my brother had jotted down my bus number and route. (I asked someone else standing near us on her behalf.)
  • Phil will be pumping gas at a service station and people will approach me and ask directions. I always laugh a bit as I refer them to my husband – Mr. GPS himself!

For the sake of full disclosure, Phil knew from the start that he was marrying someone who had no sense of direction. The first time we drove from North Carolina to Wheaton, Illinois to meet my extended family, we were about 5 miles from the home I grew up in and we got lost and drove 40 miles west. (It didn’t scare him off!)

I will come out of a rest room in a building and have to orient myself to find my way back to where I started. Our four children learned at a young age to pay attention to landmarks – their observations have come in handy for finding our way back home. ( Was Abigail’s early fascination with maps a coping strategy?) My friends also know that I am not a reliable source when it comes to finding a particular destination. They don’t ask me to drive, do they Carol?  On road trips, I pick the songs we will sing in the car – someone else navigates.

So, the natural question that arises is “Have you ever been lost?”

Answer – Yes, many times.

God has graciously provided people to ask, or signs that “suddenly” appear, or my destination looms ahead and I really don’t know how I got there. There have been a few times when I believe Divine intervention helped me arrive where I needed to be, I have no “natural” explanation. God is faithful. I am a testimony to the truth that in our weakness  – He is strong.

When you don’t have a sense of direction, the best solution is to follow someone who knows the way.

I share this because as parents and grandparents we recognize deficiencies, handicaps, and certain lack of ability in our children and grandchildren. These may be small concerns or significant issues. Yet these concerns are very real and can result in serious problems in the lives of those we love. Our Heavenly Father knows this – He knows our strengths and our weaknesses. God has blessed me throughout my life with people who are strong where I am weak – who have been able to lead me in may ways.  As I mentioned, my husband has an internal GPS that continues to amaze me after almost 37 years. Our children are all good navigators, I am so thankful they aren’t like me! But God has also brought countless precious people who He has used to lead me in the right direction for my life – AT JUST THE RIGHT TIME!

Psalm 23

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.

He makes me lie down in green pastures;

He leads me beside quiet waters,

He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the

right paths for His name’s sake.

 Even though I walk through the darkest valley,

I will fear no evil, for You are with me;

Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

Although I have no sense of direction in the natural sense, God has been faithful to lead and guide me all my life.
God will do this for our children and grandchildren as well. If we were riding in the car right now – we would sing that Scripture chorus:
“He has brought us this far by His grace,
He has led us by fire and by cloud,
He will bring us to Zion to look on His face,
Oh blessed, Oh blessed be God.”
Anyone for a road trip?
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4 thoughts on “No Sense of Direction

  1. Crystal says:

    This is encouraging! I’ve always been good with direction but lately if I find us a bit lost, I panic. I also have 2 kids who regularly go left when they should go right. It gives me lots to consider to think about what God is doing. ( By the way, I wish I’d known about the directional challenges when we let Hannah give us the shortest route back from Albany, GA! Through the Pisgah national forest got us home, but in about 3 times the time 🙂 ! )

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  2. All I can say is that it was the scenic route! Sorry…Hannah is still much better with directions than I am. Blessings to you!

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  3. Cathy Makinson says:

    Yes, Yes, Yes……thank you Lord for leading us….even when we don’t realize it too:)

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  4. Cathy, I love the old hymn, “He leadeth me, oh blessed thought…..” Amen.

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