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Discovering delight in taking a detour

Faith & Inspiration

My driving destination and task were specific and non-negotiable: jug of real maple syrup from one of the big box discount stores you need a membership to get into. But halfway there I hit a roadblock due to a car accident up ahead, so I had to take a longer route at the cost of an additional 10 minutes.

The detour took me past a roadside stand, where I found late corn and early apples, and was able to best my father in this year’s annual contest to see who could be the first to locate fresh pressed apple cider sans preservatives. Just to make the merely wonderful utterly sublime, the stand also had homemade doughnuts of the cakey kind my grandmother used to make. I bought two.

So the detour from my tightly laid plans turned out to be a disguised delight, something that was completely out of my control or foresight. I thought of Jesus’ words:

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“If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest?”

When I first got into my car, I didn’t know the detour ahead would force me to an alternate route to the box store, and that it would end so well. It was God who redirected my course, and it is Him I have to thank for the unexpected treat. It is a very small thing, of course, to find locally grown produce, but let us have a mind in us that recognizes that even in relatively small things, it is:

“… God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17).

Parenthetically, it is startling and very cool to learn that any gift, small or large, we receive from Him becomes a holy thing if we thank Him for it:

“For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer” (1 Timothy 4:4-5).”

But my main epiphany was that if it is wise for us to trust God for good outcomes in a minor recalculation of our lives, and to know that His leading and control in daily activities are benevolent, then why should we not trust Him with the big-picture outcomes of our lives and our children’s lives? These, after all, are reached merely by piling up the days in which we trust Him.

And if you wonder how I can enjoy my happy outcome when it came about through someone else’s car accident, all I can say is that God has His own story with those people that is none of my business. And because He has clearly stated it is not His will that any should perish, I am presuming His purpose in the mishap was to somehow draw them to Himself.

Andrée Seu Peterson
Andrée Seu Peterson

Andrée is the author of three books: Won't Let You Go Unless You Bless Me, Normal Kingdom Business, and We Shall Have Spring Again. Follow Andrée on Twitter @Andreespeterson.

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