I wrote the last post after a ministers’ breakfast and now here I am again after another one. Not the same lot of ministers, though: this time colleagues from the different churches in the town. Anyway, I guess it’s encouraging and not surprising that meeting with fellow leaders makes me think.
This morning, D directed our discussion from Proverbs 3:5-6.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.
D asked why his path does not always feel straight, and since the alternative translation speaks of God ‘directing’ our paths, the discussion ranged around issues of direction, faith and how far ahead we are able to see in general.
It was at this point that I thought of my satnav. I have only recently come to satnav. Not long before Christmas I wondered if I should get one (this was on an occasion when I was lost and ended up an hour late for an appointment!) but thought they are really too expensive for something which only has one use. Then I got an iphone and discovered a free (once you have paid for the phone and I am doing that anyway) satnav app. I am ridiculously excited by this.
Anyway, back to the point. Having now driven around for a bit with my phone/satnav working even when I know where I’m going, here is what I observe:
- It always points straight ahead. When I turn a corner, it reorients itself so that I can proceed with confidence in the way intended. Though there may be twists and turns ahead, the path ahead for as far as I can see it is straight.
- If there is a turn to be made, it warns me about it in advance. But not too far in advance. There may be two turns in quick succession, but generally I only have to look out for the next turn
- Sometimes it zooms in on the detail of the map; other times it gives me the big picture. A lot depends on how fast I am travelling and how many decisions there are to be made.
- [this last one I have pinched from D] If I make a mistake it can cope; it tells me to turn around, or adjusts the route accordingly. If I continue to follow I will get there in the end.
Do I have to spell out the application?