BY RHONDA BURROWS
Ever taken a wrong turn on your journey? I certainly have. I’ve taken many detours and u-turns. Finally, though, I think I’m headed in the right direction, thanks to my Heavenly GPS, which is so different from that annoying voice on the GPS in my car which screams, “recalculating, recalculating, recalculating,” even when I know I am just turning around to head in the right direction.
The Perfect GPS
G.P.S. stands for Global Positioning System. I count on it when driving in new places, especially through large cities and in heavy traffic. It’s so much easier than the old days with bulky atlases and road maps. Our Heavenly Father has an easy system for us to follow as well. It’s called the Bible, the Word. It’s my Heavenly G.P.S., God’s Perfect Salvation.
The way to go is spelled out very clearly for us to follow, if we so choose. There is a road commonly known as “The Roman Road,” which leads to understanding of salvation with such scriptures as Romans 3:23, 5:8-9, 6:23, 10: 9-10.
When we choose not to follow God’s ways, it reminds me of going mudding in an ATV. We come out covered in mud from riding through puddles and ditches. It might be fun for a little while, but it is no way to live every day.
When we are going our own way in the world of self-indulgence, the mud and slime gets all over us. Jesus, though, will bring us out of a pit, out of the miry clay, set our feet on a rock and establish our steps if we ask.1 He washes us off and makes us clean from the inside out.
Just as with our car’s G.P.S., we can ignore the directions which will get us to our destination and wander off the best pathway. I took a 15-year detour through a roughed dirt road named “alcoholism and drug addiction”. Even though there was a voice on the inside of me saying don’t go this way, however I did it anyway, complete with many bumps, bruises and crashes along the way. I also ran over a few people in the process.
In 1983 I hit a roadblock with a big crash. I could not go forward and could not back up. I was stuck. I cried out to a God and He gave me a total course correction. My journey with Him began then, but because I did not completely follow my eternal roadmap, I continued to run into areas called sin, which caused even more detours.
Then came the time when I hit another wall. Every road I had taken had led me to a place of hopelessness and despair. I was clean and sober, but my insides were full of emotional turmoil. At that moment, I had a visual I will never forget. It was of Jesus hanging on the cross. He looked down at me and said, “You must forgive to be forgiven.” This was a gigantic U-turn in my life. I surrendered to Him and began a new journey.
New Roads to Travel
In 1998 the road took me to the Dairy Queen drive-through I frequented daily for lunch. As I drove up that day, I saw a man working next door. He was someone I had hated for 40 years. Before I got my hamburger, I said to God, “I choose to forgive that man.” A few days later, in a little house church, I received a new connection to my Heavenly G.P.S. It came in the form of two baptisms, one of water and one of the Holy Spirit. I believe it began when I released the hatred from my life.
All of a sudden, it was like lights flashing and bells clanging. Instead of hearing “recalculating”, it was “recharging, recharging, recharging.” I started down the right road of understanding the Word of God for the first time. I began soaking up His words with a clarity I had never known. A genuine love for God’s Word was instilled deep inside me, along with a new hope and a new freedom I had never experienced. Finally, I was on the real road to destiny.
Listening to the Navigator
There have been other detours on the way. In 2014, I had gained a lot of weight. As in the other areas of my life, when I was ready to go down a different road than the old painful one paved with sugar and flour, God put someone in my life. I found her on Facebook. Her name was Teresa Shields Parker.
Teresa had written a book called Sweet Grace, which is now the #1 Christian weight loss memoir on Amazon. I ordered it and through the words on those pages I heard not a still small voice, but more loud, booming one say, “Sugar is one molecule away from alcohol.” In that moment, I realized I was a sugar addict. I also heard the still small voice of my Navigator say, “This is the way, walk in it.”2
I have since been on a healthy eating journey of God’s choice, along with great coaching and friendships. Through Teresa’s programs, Sweet Change and KickWeight, I have discovered new vitality and joy in my life. Oh, and weight loss, too, now totaling 60 pounds off my 4-foot, 11-inch frame.
God has always been patient and kind to me even when I strayed off the pathway. He lovingly led me back to the straight and narrow, safe roads of life when I became willing to listen to His guidance.
When I discovered huge mountains in front of me and began to feel hopeless at the thought of navigating them, I just look to Him for guidance. I have faced mountains named, “grief” and “debt”. Yet He said if I have the faith of a mustard seed, just a little tiny bit of faith, I can say to the mountain, “Move” and it will be moved.3 Sometimes it is one shovelful at a time, but it will be moved.
I am so grateful for the U-turns and do overs God has given me on this sometimes rocky road called life. I wouldn’t change a thing though because the scenery is out of this world, especially when I follow God’s GPS.
The new session of Teresa’s ridiculously low-priced weight loss coaching class, #KickWeight, will open soon for registration. The price will be just $47 a month for six months or $247 one-time payment. There are limited spots. To be notified when she opens the doors, sign up on the waitlist. You will then be the first to know before those on her Facebook page or the general email list. Get in quickly, though, because you’ll only have a day or so before she lets the world know! To sign up go here now: #KickWeight.
1Psalm 40:2 NIV
2Isaiah 30:21 NIV
3Matthew 17:20 NLT
Rhonda Burrows lives in Palestine, TX, in a log cabin in the woods with her husband, six Shetland Sheepdogs and five cats. They have six children and seven grandchildren. Her Facebook page is Ark of Grace. For other posts by Rhonda, go here.