Big Changes Happening on August 7, 2019.

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Navigating my way through life

I’m notoriously known for getting lost. I have a few dear friends who help me navigate my way when we meet for lunch. They make sure I know where I’m going. I know, my GPS is right there to help me but I always question her, does she really mean “bear left” even when there’s no left to bear? My trouble is, I think too much. My husband has told me once if not a hundred times: “Don’t think so much, you complicate things when you think so much.”

Once quite a while back, before we had our phones telling us where to go, we were out and about going somewhere. As we approached a stop sign, glancing briefly across at me, he had asked, “Left or right?” I did not notice his smirk.

Checking it out I thought I knew where we were, so confidently, I responded, “Left.”

He went right. He was right. He knew it was right. He was always going to go right. He just wanted to know if I knew it was right. I did not. When my kids were still home they told me I’d get lost going to Tilleda. I have proved them wrong. I do not get lost going to Tilleda. I know where Tilleda is.

Navigating my way through life involves driving my car into spots and spaces that I’m uncomfortable with. I think my depth perception is off. We have a small garage for my car and I think I’m going to scrape either outside mirror right off. There’s actually plenty of room, but I feel cramped.

When I approach a drive-thru at our bank, I almost always have to open the car door to reach the thing that takes my money up and away in that little canister. Pumping gas I’ve been known to pull up so far away from the pump that the hose didn’t reach. I’m hopeless.

Parking my car in a parking lot is something I’ve overcome because I always remind myself exactly where I parked. It is a terrible feeling coming out of a store, pushing a cartload of groceries scanning the lot for my car. I discovered I do not appreciate that feeling and I can imagine I look like an idiot, which is darn close to reality.

Driving up on a curb is something I’ve been known to do as well. And also I avoid parallel parking. At. All. Costs. I would rather walk a country mile to find a parking space than have to parallel park close to my destination.

When I go somewhere that I have to find my way back from, and I’m talking entering an unfamiliar building, I turn around and look back to be sure of where I came from. Once when I worked at Shamoco Ford, they sent me to St. Norbert’s College for a seminar. This was in my 20’s, mind you, so I’ve been “directionally challenged” my whole adult life. I got there, (surprise surprise), but when the meeting was over, I turned myself to the right to get out the door that I thought I had entered. Wrong door. Getting outside I was baffled. Nothing looked in the least familiar. Panic settled in my stomach and was gradually working its way nicely up to my chest cavity. I started praying.

“Father, You’re gonna have to get me out of this one.”

No sooner had I breathed that prayer than a college student appeared. I walked up to him and blurted, “I really can’t find my car.”

He smiled this great smile and said, “Oh! There’s a parking lot on the other side of school, you just must have walked out on the wrong side!” I could have hugged that kid. Seriously, he might have just been an angel plunked down at just the right time.

Once a couple of years ago I was going to pick up my daughter from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and I got lost. It was snowing and the road had me take a detour. Yes. A double whammy. My daughter had reassured me I’d be fine, I knew the route, we had gone there many times during her college years but my husband was always driving and as he has noted on several occasions, “You always have your nose in a book. You never watch where we’re going.” True. Very true statement.

At any rate, that snowy day I got myself off on the wrong exit ramp and was hopelessly lost. I called my daughter.

“I’m lost.”

“Where are you?”

“I don’t know. I’m lost.” She could tell I was on the verge of tears and very near panic.

“Listen, Mom. I’ll call you on FaceTime and when we connect, turn your phone around so I’m facing the windshield so I can see where you are.”

How’d she get so smart?

She got me right to the door of her dorm apartment and drove us both all the way home.

My warped sense of direction has surpassed close friends and family as one patron at a local post office always teases me, did I bring my popcorn along? (To drop behind me so I’d find my way home.) In the winter he makes it known I should color my popcorn so I can see it in the snow. Yes. This is what I must put up with.

But oh how blessed I am! I have instructions on how to navigate my way through the most important part of life. Every day I open the rich word of God and read how much he loves us all and puts a hedge of protection in place so we do not get lost. All we must do is accept Jesus as our savior and ask him to be lord of our lives and he will navigate us safely home.

Reassuring, sweet word of God.

And I don’t need popcorn.

(“The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me.” Psalm 16:6)