When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land. God said, “If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea. Thus the Israelites left Egypt like an army ready for battle. Ex 13:17-18 NLT
Have you ever taken on a “roundabout way”? I have made countless trips where I got my directions mixed up and it seemed that I went out of the way to get to my destination. A roundabout way is not the shortest way.
In this story from Exodus, the Israelites had finally been released from Egypt and it was time to head to their promised land. It was quite a ways on foot. But God took them on a roundabout way because if they faced any adversity they would return to their life of slavery. They went off the main road and into the wilderness. Kind of scary when that happens isn’t it? In fact the word “wilderness” has another word in it…WILDER! #WILDERness
God’s ways have often seemed much wilder than the ways I would have chosen. They take much longer, have more stops and I’m usually always complaining along the way. How much longer? Are we there yet?
As I reflected today upon the many roundabout ways I have taken over the years, I am grateful for the lessons along the way. Every detour was a divine adjustment that was necessary to reach the best outcome. On many of those prolonged journeys, I became stronger. I became wiser. On every roundabout way, I came around to what the Lord desired all along.
So do you feel like you are on a long trip to nowhere right now? Does it seem like you are in the wilderness and far away from the civilized world? Take a moment to thank the Lord for guidance and grace. The shortest route is not always the best. The Israelites had a 2 week trip that lasted 40 years! Hopefully you will reach the destination God has planned for you sooner than that:) Regardless of how you get there, God will get you there! It's going to be wild!#roundaboutway