Everyone has a cause he is championing. Everyone has a direction he is going. Everyone has an objective he’s chasing. But what happens when God alters your path and takes you on a detour?
When we were born, our parents sent us to school; we saw and interacted with people around us; we heard from our parents and friends what an ideal life should look like; we read books, watched the TV, and listened to music. From all these interactions, a dream, a vision was born. And from this vision, we created goals that we wish to accomplish. On the way madly chasing this all-important vision, however, it’s possible for a detour to occur. It is possible for God to show up and take you in a different direction than you had envisaged.
God has reasons for the detour he brings on our path. Sometimes, it is to redirect us to His divine purpose, while at other times, it is to test our convictions. Sometimes, He helps us to avoid an impending danger which as men we don’t see, while at other times, He wants to boast with us, just like He did in the case of Job.
Whatever the reason behind God’s decision to change our course, the truth is that at some point in our walk with God, our life’s route gets altered (a little bit or much depending on God’s will).
What happens when these detours occur completely depends on us. God will always be there to guide and guard, but how we react to these life-altering moments is our responsibility.
Also, the duration of our detours depends on the choices we make, our spiritual maturity and our understanding of the workings of God. It also depends on how sensitive we are to His stimuli because life’s detours could also represent stimuli for growth in certain areas of our life. God may want to teach us persistence, patience, work on our prayer life, our study habits, or may want to encourage others through our little hiccups – yes, sometimes, our suffering strengthens the faith of others, and God allows it for a while.
The timing and length of our detours in life are often dependent upon our personal choices and growth. God may have intended the detour to last for a short period, but certain factors creep in and elongate the duration. Some of those factors include:
a. Persistence in pursuing a different purpose from what God has planned for us.
Obstinacy in pursuing the initial purpose we had in mind instead of understanding that God wants us to change direction could elongate the duration of the detour and may even push us off the track completely. Always remember that all things work together for good to them that love God and to them who are they called according to His purpose.
So, if you are working for your own purpose, you shouldn’t expect all things to work together for your good. God only finances his projects, his visions, and His purpose. So, persisting in the ‘wrong’ path would only succeed in elongating the duration of the detour if that doesn’t take you completely off the rails.
One tendency during the detour is to constantly look out through the window to see where other colleagues are and what they are doing. And when you observe that the colleagues are far gone ahead or seem to be living a luxurious life, feelings of jealousy, anger envy and covetousness arise.
At this point, you will see yourself constantly comparing yourself with the people who started on the same journey with you, not knowing that everyone has his personal dealings with God. Imagine driving with your eyes only looking at the rear mirrors or just fixed on the vehicles on your left, you’ll either must slow down or you’ll cause an accident that will keep you grounded for long.
So, it’s not because you are lazy or lacking in wisdom. Their own detour may come tomorrow, or they may have experienced theirs and went through it successfully. So, comparison would only elongate the period of the detour.
c. Disobedience to instructions:
During the detour, God always gives instructions on how to go through the new course successfully. This is very crucial if you are going to survive on the course that God is taking you through and come out victorious. You must listen to and abide by his instructions.
God’s instructions can come in various forms, such as through His Word, dreams, prophetic utterances, wise counsel by godly men and women, intuition etc. Your ears must be open to know how to travel in this new way. And when you receive His clear directive, just obey, it is God’s way, not your way this time.
d. Anger and frustration:
It could be normal at the beginning to wish that things had gone the way you thought and planned for. But resentment towards God and the new route should cease as you realise that God’s plans are best for you.
When you begin to regret following God in the first place or worrying over the past or have anxieties for the future, frustration is bound to result. Retained and exacerbated anger and frustration will only make the new course more grievous, and the duration of the detour infinite.
Next in the series: Detours in life| What elongates the duration – Part 2
What a beautiful piece. What a perfectly, written beautiful piece.
I absolutely love this one. Thank you.
I’m glad you love it. Thanks for your comment. God be praised.