Travel With a guide

by Pastor Doug Engel

Many years ago my parents booked a “Travel Europe” vacation. Once they got to Paris, as I recall, they were able to travel anywhere in Europe on a Eurail pass. The same opportunity is available today, although I don’t think it’s a good idea right now with all the Coronavirus restrictions. But, having the opportunity to visit 33 countries in this way would be very exciting!

Now, before I say anymore, you’ve got to know a little bit about my dad. First, he didn’t really like asking for directions. Maybe he’s a typical guy or it could be genetic. Ouch! I’ve been known to travel hours out of the way trying to find the hotel I’d booked in Florida. Yes, I should have stopped to ask for directions.

The second thing I’ll say is that my dad didn’t like to spend any “extra” money. He would always choose the cheapest option. He was afflicted with this characteristic all his life. In honour of my dad, when he passed from this life into the next, we made sure that his casket was of the cheaper variety. He would have been so proud of us!

It’s one thing to not like asking for directions but when you’re in a foreign country where they all speak a language that is different than your own ... let’s just say that we were glad they found their way back home safely! When the two of them got back from their excursion we all anticipated looking at their pictures and hearing about their many adventures.

This is where the other thing about my dad showed up, you know, go the cheapest way possible. As we looked at their pictures there were people, places, and things but they couldn’t tell us anything about them. How could this happen? It happened because they chose (maybe it was my dad) not to pay for the guided tours! I am confident that if they had invested in a tour guide their experience would have been enriched.

In some ways our lives can be like my parent’s European vacation. We’re not sure where we are, we’re too stubborn to ask for directions, and we haven’t taken advantage of a guide.

Here’s the truth. God has provided us with both a guidebook (the Bible) and a personal guide (the Holy Spirit) for our journey. Just before Jesus suffered he told his followers that he was going away but not to worry because he would also not leave them without a guide.

“I will ask the Father, and he will give you another helper who will be with you forever. That helper is the Spirit of Truth. The world cannot accept him, because it doesn’t see or know him. You know him, because he lives with you and will be in you” (John 14:16-17 GW).

As you journey through life, don’t do it on your own. Stop often and ask for directions with your guidebook in hand (The Bible). Don’t be afraid to invest in your personal guide. Get to know his voice, and follow where he leads. Just maybe, when you’ve pulled out the pictures of your life’s journey to show someone else, you’ll be able to tell them exactly were you’ve been and where you’re going.