I’m feeling terrible—I couldn’t feel worse! Get me on my feet again. You promised, remember? When I told my story, you responded; train me well in your deep wisdom. Help me understand these things inside and out so I can ponder your miracle-wonders. My sad life’s dilapidated, a falling-down barn; build me up again by your Word. Barricade the road that goes Nowhere; grace me with your clear revelation. I choose the true road to Somewhere, I post your road signs at every curve and corner. I grasp and cling to whatever you tell me; God, don’t let me down! I’ll run the course you lay out for me if you’ll just show me how. (Psalm 119:30)
As we begin today, I really just want to focus on one portion of this passage - the idea of barricades being set up in our path. I have frequently been speaking with others only hear they are frustrated by all the things that seem to stand in their way as they try to head down a particular path. I often just sit back and listen, hearing regretful story one right after another - all indicating they are running into barriers of some kind as they attempt to pursue whatever it is they are on mission to accomplish. There are indeed times when barriers mean we are to just stop, turn around (detour), and take a totally different direction. I want us to consider something today that we may not have considered very closely - God might just be allowing a few barriers in our path to test our commitment to the path.
If we are not making wise choices with the path we are traveling, those barriers are likely to keep us from 'going down the road to Nowhere' - the place of regret and woe. If the choices we are making are actually lead us down the 'road to Somewhere' and are consistent with God's plan for our lives, those barriers we experience are not meant to stop us. They might just be meant to test our moxie - will we continue or turn back? Will they deter us totally, or build our faith to continue? Some of us are at the point of giving up on the course we know God plans for our lives, all because of the barricades. We see the delays as too much. Have you ever experienced a delay on the way to work, frustrating you because you had to take a different road or just be patient long enough for traffic to clear? I have experienced that on lots of occasions, only to find out the exact path I would have gone at exactly the time I would have crossed it ended up with a major accident on that roadway.
Do we complain when we see the 'barricades' in our path keeping us safe from some harm? Not usually. So, why do we complain when we don't understand the barricade's purpose? Why do we have such a hard time trusting God to keep us safe as we make our journey with him? It may just be that we are viewing those barricades as something to 'turn us back'. If we are on the right course, they aren't there to turn us back, but to prepare us for something that is likely about to come our way on that very course we are traveling. The delay or detour isn't meant to stop us - it is meant to prepare us. Don't view the barricades as defeat - see them as opportunities to lean in, get close to God, listening intently to how he is leading. You could begin to realize God isn't standing in your way - he is protecting your way! Just sayin!