Content & Images © 2008-2014 - Rachel Miller, Ink Road Originals LLC, All Rights Reserved

Monday, March 19, 2012

Trusting God's Guidance Through the "Fog"

There is something secure about being able to see what is directly ahead of us. We feel somehow better able to handle the situation (even if that is just a delusion), as long as we know which direction it is coming from.  I think this feeling of helplessness is what makes fog so disturbing to us, even on a spiritual level.  At least, I feel I learned a few spiritual lessons from fog during my recent nighttime drive through it!

The Dark Heart of a Cloud

On the way to Colorado Springs, my fellow vacationers and I drove all day in heavy rain, but we didn't feel alarmed or even troubled about the weather conditions until it got seriously foggy that evening.

As the sun set...
Really, really foggy.  We snapped these two pictures through the car windows, half an hour or so apart, before and after sunset.

We were literally driving through the heart of a cloud at that altitude. Traffic slowed to a walking pace, as weird white arms of cloud slid across the road ahead like giant snakes.  Visibility was at zero; we could only see about half of a car length ahead of us at times.  We even passed a large-eared fox and later a bunch of mule deer waiting beside the road to cross.

Fog bank at night.
Unable to pull off anywhere, I kept edging the car slowly down the steep mountain slope.  Conversation in the car shrank to hushed monosyllables.

Then our radio started playing what I would call "Christian Anthems" about walking bravely with the Lord. We spontaneously turned it up and sang along, and suddenly we felt better, even though it would be another hour before we escaped the fog bank.

Guidance Through the Fog

Frequently, life is like driving through that heavy fog bank with zero visibility! Strange things seem to come at us from out of nowhere.  Sometimes they are threatening, and sometimes they aren't, but either way, we feel off-balance and terrified when they suddenly appear.  The thing that shrouds them from our view becomes itself a kind of enemy--an ally with our fears.

We can give in to a fear of "fog" in life, like changing circumstances (which makes planning and foresight impossible), impending money and resource shortages, health issues, and personal relationships, but that fear will soon destroy us.  Thoughts of ways to defend ourselves against any threat will consume our thinking and snuff out everything else.  Fear might even cut us off from God when we allow ourselves to think that God has abandoned us to the fog.

There is an alternative.  We can choose to lean on the Lord and go forward without embracing those fears.  I'm not saying that God has asked us to live without feeling the sensation of fear (it is perfectly natural and good for us at times), but God wants us to leave the worrying about what we cannot predict and the constant scanning of that foggy horizon to Him.  When the darkness really presses in, we need not focus on it, but should instead remind ourselves in praise of His past victories while He works another one in our lives (2 Chronicles 20: 15-28).  He can see what lies ahead, after all, and He isn't afraid of it.  Because He is with us, we shouldn't be, either.

Our task is to trust His guidance, and that is far easier than trying to create our own.

 The Bible says, "Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path," (Psalm 119: 105 NIV). Instead of overloading us with worries and revelations about what might lie ahead, God has given us His guidance for this present moment (His Word, the Bible, and Christ who models for us the way [John 1: 1-5]), and a firm and irrefutable promise that He will save us from every alarm if we follow Him (John 3: 16; Joshua 1: 9). We don't need to fear the fog, or what might lie ahead.  We will face those things when we come to them, and we won't be alone!  God will be with us in the future, just as He is with us right now. We just need to trust Him, and He will guide us home.