A person may plan his own journey,
but the Lord directs his steps. Proverbs 16:9 GW
Our church is doing a 40 Day Prayer Challenge called Draw the Circle by Mark Batterson. We’ve learned the real purpose of prayer is to meet with God in His presence. To spend time with Him to listen and hear His leading then circling His nudges and promptings with prayer until we get an answer. Then to follow through as we walk out His will for our lives and in the process we impact and influence others to lead them to Jesus.
One of the main points he made in his book The Circle Maker was to use prayer as the way God gives us direction and to follow the Spirit’s leading, don’t try to go ahead or lag behind. Don’t make our own plans and don’t try to do what only God can do. Just wait, listen, then follow through. So my first circle was to give myself and my independence and to totally rely on God. To keep my focus on Him.
Today, was the first day of the challenge and it had quite the impact on me in an unusual way. On the way home from mailing my taxes, I got behind a brand new John Deere spraying tractor apparently on its way to its new home. I was on a two lane country road that runs close to two Industrial Parks around “quitting time” so for a country road traffic was heavy. The tractor was going slower than any tractor I have every followed. At first people were accepting of it because surely he was going to turn into one of the farms or fields. But he kept passing them. then we got to an incline and we were at a crawl. I looked in my rearview mirror to see the line of traffic getting longer by the minute. Because the road had curves and ups and downs, passing was not a good idea. But one brave soul decided to go for it and made it safely around him. Soon two other cars decided to go. The only problem was, there was traffic coming in the opposite direction and they quickly got back in line. But when it looked good to go they both went. The first car got over easily, but it was a closer call for the second. After we passed another crossroad and he didn’t turn, a truck pulled out even though traffic was coming towards him, and he got over just in time. Needless to say no one else passed. Until we got to a part of the road that was straight, you could see oncoming traffic and nothing was coming for as far as you could see. The car in front of me and myself cautiously pulled out and was able to safely get back over.
Although it was painful at times to go so slow because the road was familiar I knew it wasn’t safe to pass before I did. God reminded me that’s why it’s so important to meet with Him consistently. Why we need to listen for directions and then follow through. He knows the way, He knows when we need to move and when we need to be still. He knows who’s going to be ccoming on our path and knows who we need to meet and who we don’t. Sure it wasn’t easy going so slow, but it sure taught me the importance of listening to God’s directions every day.