Getting to a village in Africa usually meant turning off a dirt road and driving through areas of scrub bush, weaving around thorn bushes, boulders, and across sandy, muddy, or swollen rivers. Signposts were trees, a rock outcrop, or a lone mud-walled duka.
With so many thorn trees, punctured tires were common. After a rain my little VW sometimes got stuck in deep, sticky mud or slid across a road of slick, black cotton soil. My biggest fear was getting safely to the other side of a flowing river or muddy stream. If I attempted to cross, would my car and I be swept downstream or swallowed by thick mud?
Was the water flowing fast and high? Had other vehicles like mine safely crossed in the last few minutes? Were there people I could ask? Should I change direction and go another way? If there was no other way, should I wait or return to where I started?
On one occasion a man stood in the river waving me on. My hands gripped the wheel and I focused on my guide who walked ahead on a submerged concrete slab. I did not turn my head to look upstream or downstream at the flowing water. Once I committed there was no turning around. I just kept moving slowly forward, praying my car would not stall or slip off the narrow slab.
God allows us to make choices on the road of life in which there are many crossings. Do we rush into the water without counsel or asking questions? Do we test the waters, then choose to risk what we know is a bad decision? In that case we might begin the crossing, then realize our foolishness but can’t turn back. We must suffer the consequence.
Unlike crossing a river in Africa, in life there is always One who knows what is best. Sometimes we must go through deep waters. The Lord waits to guide us, for us to trust His direction and His promises.
Isaiah 43:2 (KJV) When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee …
James 1:5 (KJV) If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
Deut 31:8 KJV And the LORD, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.
Proverbs 11:14 KJV Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.