The Best Part of Getting Lost

I love road trip! Probably because I love having long conversations with someone else, and that usually happens on a road trip. You’re stuck in a car for ten, twelve hours. What else are you going to do? And that’s what was going on a few years ago when we got lost. Here’s how it went down.

We’re heading north, out of Florida and right into Alabama, on our way back home from a great beach vacation. My wife is handling the navigating while I’m handling the wheel. And we’re talking. About what? I have no idea. But the conversation is really great and neither of us is really paying attention to the road until all of a sudden my wife says, “Wait! We’re lost!”

“What? What do you mean we’re lost?”

“We were supposed to turn left back there. Now we’re lost in Alabama!”

Well, we’re not so lost as much as off track. But no worries, just a quick reroute up ahead and we’ll be right back on track. So my wife plots a course and yells out, “Turn here!” So I veer our trusty Ford Escape off the highway and onto a dusty dirt road. Up and down a couple of hills and we’re right back on track. But then I looked up. And then I hit the brakes.

“What are you doing?” my wife yells, and rightly so. But I just had to stop.

I get out of the car and walk over to a little intersection on this back road of Alabama. Before me is a beautiful scene – a little farm house, rolling green hills, cows grazing lazily, and a pure blue pond. But I wasn’t looking at the farm scene. I was pointing at a road sign.

“Look!” I shout to her, still in the trusty Ford Escape. This road is an off-the-track, out-of-the-way, oh-no-we’re-lost road. This road is really just 150 yards of dirt leading to a stranger’s driveway, and there’s no way in the world that we would ever know about it. Unless we got off track. But we did, and so we saw it.

The road? Well of course it was called “Colvin Road.”

Was it fate? Was it coincidence? It doesn’t matter! It was Colvin Road!!! And Colvin isn’t the most popular of last names, trust me. It was meant to be, no matter what you think.

Sometimes we get off track. We get distracted, confused, or maybe just lazy. But we get our eyes off the map and before we know it we’re heading down a dirt road to try to catch up.

But in those times, if we don’t take time we may miss something amazing. Something you would only see if you get off track.

In life, you’re bound to get off track. It happens. You lose your job. You get robbed. Your boyfriend breaks up with you. Your spouse dies. God forbid any of those things ever happen! But if they do, and while you’re getting back on track, don’t miss what’s right around you. Use this time of being off track to find something beautiful, amazing, perplexing, astonishing – something you would have never seen, known, or experienced if you had stayed on track.

Look, I’m not saying that God is responsible for getting you lost. But I am saying that if you don’t stop and look around when you do get lost, you may miss something he’s trying to show you. About yourself. About your world. About something you’re really passionate about but don’t think about when you’re lost.

When have you gotten off track and thought you couldn’t get back on track? What have you seen that you wouldn’t have seen if you hadn’t gotten off track?