Monday, July 30, 2018

Life Is An Adventure ~ God Is My Tour Guide

"Be careful for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."
Philippians 4:6-7
(KJV)



Since beginning our minimizing journey a few years ago, my family and I have learned to value experiences above physical possessions.  For example, we are far more inclined to visit a garden, hiking trail, or waterfall than we are to spend money buying things.
We are also learning to be far more accepting of life's ebb and flow because we understand more fully that happenstance and coincidence are not in God's vocabulary, and everything that touches our lives has passed through His hand first.

As you may or may not have noticed, trust does not come easy for me.  I worry and fret, not just a little—a LOT.  Mom always told me, "Cheryl, when you're worrying, you're not trusting; when you're trusting, you're not worrying."  Very true statement of the obvious, but a way-too-often-needed reminder.

Jesus said in Matthew 6:34, "Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof."  (KJV)

Can you imagine what life would be like lived just this way?  Living life one day at a time, taking no thought of the possibility that there will be a tomorrow.  Not looking too far ahead.  Just breathing in the here and now, savoring our days, milking the moments for all they're worth, wringing out every drop of life and allowing God to do all of the "worrying."  Obviously, then worry would no longer exist because God doesn't worry.  He doesn't need to.  He is sovereign.
So, what if we lived our lives with no thought of tomorrow?  Isn't this the way Jesus lived His?   He either went out and prayed all night long or started praying very early in the day, seeking God's will and direction.  Just as God provided manna on a daily basis for the Israelites in the wilderness, He gave Jesus daily instructions for each day of life.
Jesus allowed nothing to stand in the way of the continual spontaneity of His Father's orchestration.
Nothing dictated His days, hours, and moments except His Father's guidance.

What if we allowed Jesus to renew our minds and convince us into living our lives just this way?
Recently, as I was praying, seeking Him with my whole heart, I heard,

"Look at life as an adventure, with Me as your tour guide."

I don't know about you, but when I hear the word "adventure," I suddenly feel a sense of happy excitement.  Who doesn't love an adventure, right?  I never thought of viewing life that way.
As I have been carefully considering His words, I started thinking about different tourist places we have visited through the years, and how we would, without worry or care, put our tour/adventure in the hands of an experienced tour guide.  We would never have thought of trying to navigate ourselves, because we were totally unfamiliar with the area, special sites, pitfalls, etc.  So, we would get on the bus, tram, horse-drawn carriage, or whatever other means of transportation, and we would listen to the things the tour guide would point out.  We would trust him/her to lead the way and keep us on the right track.  We trusted in the tour guide's experience and knew it would be the means of making our first-time adventure as enriched as it possibly could be.  We never one time doubted the tour guide's assessment, factual accuracy, or advice because it was understood that he/she possessed a familiarity with the area that we knew nothing about.  How ridiculous and absurd it would have been to snatch the reins from our tour guide and attempt to guide the tour ourselves!  I hate to think where we would have ended up.  The tour guide obviously lived in the area or spent enough time there to become personally familiar and comfortable educating tourists who were just passing through.

The thought of fully releasing the reins of life to God and allowing Him to guide life's tour is extremely liberating.
It sends an enormous wave of relief over my overly-worried, anxiety-ridden spirit.
Relief is mixed with gratitude that I am not in control, and I am not expected to be!
Hallelujah, and what a load off my mind!
I am not flailing on life's ocean without Divine Providence.
Everything that is taking place is supposed to be happening.
I am right where I am intended to be.
All of my days are in God's hand—the safest place in the world because He is the One who made me.
"Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in Your book and planned before a single one of them began."  Psalm 139:16  (CSB)

A Master Builder planned each one of our lives, right down to every, single moment we will ever live and breathe.
Isn't that a comforting realization?
He orders our steps.
He not only planned even the most minute details of our lives, but He became a human and walked in a body of flesh for 33 years, so He could become personally acquainted and experienced with "life's tour."
He knows the way.
He IS the way.
Following the example of His earthly pilgrimage leads us to God, which is the path to peace.
"Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me."  John 14:6  (ESV)

Here are five basic suggestions for optimizing this "tour" called life.

#1.  Acknowledge your need for a tour guide.
"I know, O Lord, that the way of man is not in himself, that it is not in man who walks to direct his steps."  Jeremiah 10:23  (ESV)

#2.  Trust the tour guide.
"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths."  Proverbs 3:5-6  (KJV)
"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."  Jeremiah 29:11  (ESV)
"And He said, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”  Exodus 33:14  (ESV)
"Nevertheless, I am continually with You; You hold my right hand. You guide me with Your counsel, and afterward, You will receive me to glory."  Psalm 73:23-24  (ESV)

#3.  Relax, knowing you will always be told what to do.
"And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left."  Isaiah 30:21  (ESV)
"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you."  Psalm 32:8  (ESV)
"The LORD directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives."  Psalm 37:23  (NLT)
"Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: I am the Lord your God, who teaches you to profit, who leads you in the way you should go."  Isaiah 48:17  (ESV)
"For You are my rock and my fortress; and for Your name's sake You lead me and guide me."
Psalm 31:3  (ESV)
"But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you."  John 14:26  (ESV)

#4.  Follow the tour guide's instructions.
"To him, the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear His voice, and He calls His own sheep by name and leads them out. When He has brought out all His own, He goes before them, and the sheep follow Him, for they know His voice."  John 10:3-4  (ESV)
"He leads the humble in what is right and teaches the humble His way. All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep His covenant and His testimonies."
Psalm 25:9-10  (ESV)

#5.  Enjoy the adventure!
Jesus said, "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly."
John 10:10  (KJV)
"Who is the man who fears the Lord? Him will He instruct in the way that He should choose. His soul shall abide in well-being, and his offspring shall inherit the land. The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear Him, and He makes known to them His covenant. My eyes are ever toward the Lord, for he will pluck my feet out of the net."  Psalm 25:12-15  (ESV)
"For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure."


Philippians 2:13  (ESV)
"Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness."  Isaiah 41:10  (KJV)

We won't be here forever.
We are just visiting tourists, passing through, then passing on.
God created this world, and He came to physically live in it.
He knows it inside out—everything about it is familiar to Him.
He not only created this world, He created you and me.
He knows us inside out—everything about us is familiar to Him.
He is ordering every one of our days.
Surrendering our free will to His Divine will is the best and most relieving thing we could ever do.
We don't have to figure anything out because our Tour Guide already knows everything.
He guarantees a beautiful tour and a Heavenly outcome if we stay on board and allow Him to drive!

24 comments:

  1. You are so right, Cheryl, God is our tour guide on this adventure, called life. Thank you for pouring your heart into finding the best verses to support your message. A friend sent me a prayer called: Jesus, You Take Over, which is along your theme for today. Your words, and our common trait of worrying, help me. Thank you and God Bless You!

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    1. Dear Kitty! Your words touched me so much. I am so thankful for you and your support and encouragement. Praying for you and sending hugs your way!

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  2. Cheryl, what a wonderful post! Great suggestions with powerful Scriptures to support them. Many blessings to you and your sweet family ❤

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    1. Thank you ever so much, Beth! I so appreciate your sweet visit and kind words. May blessings to you and your dear family, also! I hope all is well with all of you. Praying for you. :)

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  3. Excellent analogy. We trust others for basic guidance and yet we constantly try to take the lead from the One that made us and the path before us. Sounds ridiculous once stated so eloquently!

    Thanks, sister. I have the same tendencies.

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    1. I so appreciate your comments and kind words, brother. God bless you!

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  4. Hi Cheryl, I LOVED this!! The title is awesome!!

    I recently finished reading Life on the Farm by Rory Feek, a continuation of his story without his wife. In it, he talked about a friend of he and Joey whose attitude about life was instrumental with how Joey faced her final days. Of course, the Lord was her strength first and foremost, but this friend saw everything in life as an adventure. Rory told the story of when their tour bus's electrical went out on a dark mountainside road. Their friend was drive and instead of panicking, He exclaimed, "Now this is going to be fun!" with a big smile on his face. Oh to live with that kind of trust and abandon to the Lord.

    Your words have inspired me to do so sweet friend. Thank you so much for your heart for writing. The Lord has been feeding you much indeed and I am so thankful that you share it with all of us.

    I enjoyed my afternoon on the back porch catching up on all your blog posts. I felt like I spent the afternoon with you. :-)

    Blessings my sweet friend!

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    1. Thank you ever so much, sweet friend. It was so wonderful to think of you on your beautiful back porch catching up here. Wouldn't it be such a blessing if we truly could spend the afternoon together praying and talking about God's goodness? Sending much love and many hugs your way~I am so thankful for you and your dear encouragement.

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  5. Cheryl,
    Hi friend! I so enjoyed this post and loved your comparisons of life’s adventures with God to an experienced tour guide— what lively food for thought you gave me tonight! Sometimes it’s hard to trust him with the adventure, but actually it’s the only way we can abandon our fear of the future and move forward in faith where he’s leading us. Sending love to you tonight! XO

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    1. Oh, so wonderful to see your sweet comment, my friend! I loved the thoughts you shared here about abandoning our fear of the future and moving forward in faith. Sometimes, I picture Jesus one day looking at us and saying, "If only you would have relaxed, left everything in My hands, and enjoyed the adventure called life!" All of our worry is so vain, and yet, it is so hard to turn loose of it and live our lives with reckless-abandon trust. I am praying for you faithfully and trusting all is going wonderful in your life. Sending much love back to you and many blessings, too!

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  6. Oh Cheryl, How special as I am now trying to find my way out to sunshine again..Each step seems to only take Me down darker roads..What a comfort this was..I know Mom use to say when I would tell her bad things from my life she would say Darling that is what you call life..You make the best out of the bad and run on..Your message here reminded me of Mom..Thanks just pray I can see the way through all the tears.You sure have a great calling to help others on the road of life..May God richly bless all of you in His service..God hug you close today..Love Bunches, Elaine Dunn Otvos

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    1. I can just hear your sweet Mom telling you something like that. You are going to find your way, sweet friend. Your Mom poured so much love and guidance into your life. All of those prayers she prayed for you are still being heard by God, and you are going to be just fine. Keep looking toward the Light and know that I love you and am praying for you.

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  7. Cheryl, I love this analogy of placing ourselves in the hands of a tour guide. We have done that quite often, but more importantly am I allowing God to guide me through this adventure He has already planned for me! I thoroughly enjoy your writing, what a gift you are!,

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    1. Oh, Pam! Thank you ever so much for your kind words of encouragement! May the dear Lord bless you abundantly, my friend!

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  8. Hello Cheryl. Oh what a blessing this post was. I am a dyed in the wool worrier. I have been since I was a small child. Anyone who knows me at all will tell you this fact. Dennis and ai are beginning to try to make retirement plans. We wonder if this earth or we, will even be here by then, but plans must be made in the event we’re still here. I’m almost paralyzed with fear over making the wrong decision. You post and it’s accompanying verses give me lots to think about.
    Much love and many blessings to you my friend.
    Blessings,
    Betsy

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    1. Oh, sweet friend! I can so relate to your worrying! I wonder what it would take for you and me to stop worrying and just fall back into the arms of Jesus and allow Him to do it all. One day, when we see Him, I wonder if He will tell us how much we missed in this life by our constant worry and anxiety. I feel so bad over all the wasted time I have spent on worry and fear, and I want to do differently going forward. We will keep praying for each other in these battles, dear friend. I know it is scary looking ahead toward retirement, and I will surely be continuing to pray for you and trusting God to lead you. I feel in my spirit that He has amazing and wonderful things ahead for you and Dennis. May you just see His love in all kinds of new and unexpected ways as you press toward together!! Sending much love to you and many hugs, too!

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  9. This is a great post! Thank you! I think we ALL needed to hear this! :)

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    1. Thank you, dear Ang. Praying for you and looking forward to seeing what God does in your lives! I so appreciate your support and encouragement, my friend.

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  10. Wonderful words to take to heart. Thank you dear Cheryl for another excellent lesson.

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    1. And, thank you, dear Cheryl, for reading and for your words of encouragement! Sending love and hugs your way!

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  11. Thanks Cheryl,The kind words and prayers with your love gives strength in the heat of the battles..Many tears fell as I read your reply to me..You are a great blessing to Me and I am sure all your Dear Friends would say Amen to that..God bless and hug all 3 of you..Love Bunches,Elaine

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    1. God bless you, too, sweet, precious friend. Keep encouraged. I am praying for you and sending much love your way.

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  12. Dearest Cheryl, what a wonderful post! It was so sweet, refreshing, AND encouraging...just what I needed. I have missed you so much and I have missed reading your posts. What a blessing it was to visit this evening.

    Thinking of you, dear one, and wishing you a beautiful August. Love and hugs to you!

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    1. Oh, it was so wonderful to see you had stopped by! I have missed you and your sweet visits, also. I am so thankful you had some time off this summer and could be with your dear boy and enjoy those special moments. They grow so quickly! Every second is beyond precious. Thank you for your encouraging words, sweet friend! Sending much love and many hugs back to you!

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