Look To God, Not Google!

 

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I put my trust in Google Maps and it let me down…

I had planned it all so carefully- checking the route in advance, printing off the section of the map I needed, memorising the basic directions…

All was going well… until I realised I had been directed down a road which no longer existed!

I tried to find another way through, but it took me off the section of the map I had printed and before long I was completely lost!

This was in the days before I had a smartphone so, trying to fight back the panic, I stopped and asked for help.  I asked three different people: one had no idea, one thought they knew but directed me to the wrong place, one knew the way but unfortunately, as I discovered later, they couldn’t tell their left from their right!

90 minutes later after much desperate prayer and many random turns, I finally arrived at my destination just as the seminar I was meant to be leading finished!  Even worse, now that I had got there I had no idea how to find my way back out!

Life can feel like that sometimes.  You know where you want to go, but finding a way to get there, or people who can help direct you, seems impossible.  Where do you turn for direction?

Too often my first port of call is Google.  If I have a problem, if I am facing an unfamiliar situation, or I want to find out more about a potential opportunity, my default is to search for information- to look for advice and insights from others who have experienced something similar, or to hunt for the knowledge I need to know the right way forward.

Sometimes that can be helpful but, as I discovered that day in the car, Google is not completely reliable.

I am reading through the book of Nehemiah at the moment and one thing that has struck me is that in a difficult and unfamiliar situation, where Nehemiah is uncertain about the way ahead, his first response is to turn to God.

“When I heard this, I sat down and wept.  In fact, for days I mourned, fasted, and prayed to the God of heaven.”  (Nehemiah 1:4 NLT)

Obviously Google wasn’t an option back then but, even so, the message comes across strongly that it is not human wisdom Nehemiah is seeking, but God’s.

It seems that Nehemiah prays for 4-5 months before he finally speaks to the king about the matter that is troubling him and asks for help to put it right!

What follows is an amazing story of Nehemiah being granted great favour by the king, and travelling to Jerusalem to rebuild the ruined city.  He perseveres through fierce opposition to motivate the people and see the task through to completion.  It is a lot of hard work but prayer is the foundation, and that is ultimately what enables Nehemiah to succeed.

His story challenges me to cultivate that same attitude.  As Joyce Meyer puts it,

“Let prayer be your first response, not your last resort.”

Human wisdom may fail us- eventually it will fail us- but God’s wisdom will always lead us in the right direction and get us where we need to be.

As I set off to go home that day I got horribly lost, I still had no idea of the route I had to travel, but there was one crucial difference- I had a guide.  Someone who was heading in my direction had agreed to drive in front of me and lead the way until I was back on the roads that I knew.  All I had to do was follow, so I did, and eventually I made it home!

We may not always know the way, but if we know the one who does and we follow his lead it will be all right in the end.  The challenge is laying down our desire for knowledge and control, and instead surrendering to him as he leads us one step at a time.

The challenge is learning to look to God before we look to Google!

“The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life.  I will advise you and watch over you.””  (Psalm 32:8 NLT)

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Inspire Me Monday

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18 thoughts on “Look To God, Not Google!

    1. I’m glad you found it helpful, Joanne! Yes, the length of time Nehemiah prayed for was a challenge to me. It’s easy to pray once or twice and then think it’s time for action but so important to wait until God says it’s time!

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  1. I have absolutely no sense of direction. Before GPS I often got turned around and lost, reduced to frustrated tears. When I’m lost in life, however, only God can help. Prayer reminds me He is in control and has a plan for me.

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    1. And while Google is great for many things, God is the only one who is completely reliable. Thanks for visiting, Tiffiney! Hope you have a great day too!

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  2. I remember the days of no smartphone and printed paper directions. Yikes! I’m surprised I made it anywhere. Thank you for pointing us to God but also by the way of Nehemiah. Every time i read how Nehemiah sat down and wept as a first reposes, I am in awe. Do I look to God first or Google? I wish I could answer that it is God all the time. I want to be more like Nehemiah.

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    1. Thanks, Mary! Yes, I want to be more like Nehemiah too. He is a great example- not only in going to God as a first response, but also continuing praying for an extended time before he took action.

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  3. I can sure relate to the part about directions. However, missing your own seminar – oh my! What a valuable lesson you’ve connected your experience to, Leslie. It’s true that as long as our trust is in God we’ll get to where he wants us to be.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It wasn’t a good day! They did ask me back though to do it the following year, and it was somewhere different and I was able to take the train! 🙂 God is much more reliable as a guide!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh yes! I’ve always loved the message of Nehemiah to pray first! He prayed and then acted. I know I can get better at this as easily distracted by navigation units like Google! Great and timely message, Lesley. Thank you!

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  5. I agree – it is so easy to first turn horizonatally, towards things like Google or people, rather than looking vertically towards God. So instead of Him being our first and most essential resource ,He can often fall behind things that will never have His divine power, wisdom, love. Thanks for the post and the reminder that God is our best navigational system.

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  6. Oh my goodness Leslie, this is so good! Boy do I need this reminder too! I get so aggravated with myself that even tho I know better, I often save prayer as my last resort instead of my immediate response! It’s seems I have to be lost, at my wits end, scared, etc. before I turn in the one and only Right Direction for help. Love this post and your words have touched me today! Cindy #fmf FB page PS will definitely share this!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Cindy! So glad this spoke to you today. I agree, even though we know we should go to God it is still easy to go to other places first sometimes.

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