Getting Off Track
As we travel upon our pathways of purpose, we will experience getting off-track from time to time. As much as we desire to avoid this, we can take comfort in knowing that getting off-track for a short time can actually support our journeys.
Have you ever shifted from feeling purely inspired to downright discouraged? As we live on purpose, we feel ready to help the world, prepared to make a difference and passionate to help others. Yet, at times, interruptions happen, emergencies arise or criticism assaults us. Suddenly we can feel discouraged, frustrated – and off-track from our purposeful course. Perhaps we may even feel unaccomplished and unfulfilled; we may subsequently question if we will truly ever achieve that upon which we have set our hearts and our paths.
How can we then move from being discouraged to being inspired? How can the off-track twists and turns actually help us to travel more purposefully?
– First, take comfort that God loves you for who are in Christ. He loves your being and not simply your doing. “Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” (John 1:12) Our faith in Christ, our receiving Him in our hearts, secures our standing with God. Yes, God wants us to obey His Word and work faithfully for His Kingdom. Yes, He wants us to experience victory in living in His Truth. Yet, irrespective of circumstance, God loves you as His cherished child for who you are in Christ.
– Second, remember that feeling off-track indicates that you were indeed on-track! Yes, it reflects that you were previously moving intentionally and purposefully. The recognition of being off-track therefore allows you to move again to being on-track. Do not count the steps you could have taken if you had not been interrupted. Do not contemplate how far you could have traveled upon your path if you had not veered off-course. Simply take heart that you are on the path again – and keep going!
– Third, connect humbly and gratefully with God to discover what you can learn from the distractions and emergencies and criticisms. Ask Him how you can better handle these situations. Such events are opportunities in which we can grow. We can react in frustration or anger or discouragement. Or we can react in love and compassion and hope. The very twists and turns that seem to pull us from our path may actually propel us further upon our path if we react to them with a loving heart. We may amidst certain trials, for example, grow in patience, in wisdom or in generosity.
God is sovereign and allows events to happen, even those which we perceive to lead us from our course. We must discern how these events can help us to grow and how they can support – rather than hinder – our movement upon our purposeful pathway. We fix our trust in God “and we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
Today, as you journey upon your purposeful pathway, embrace the twists and turns and obstacles that you may encounter. Recognize that being off-track may actually help your course if your heart is open to the life lessons which therein lie; realize also that what you may perceive to be off-track may actually be a powerful part of your pathway. Those very twists and turns may lead you closer to your destination and to God Himself. Open your heart and allow God to work through all situations. Then faithfully follow Him step by step…
© 2011 Caroline Gavin
How did you feel the last time you got off track?