With most everyone owning a smartphone now, road maps and guessing how long it will take to get to the rodeo or bull riding are long gone replaced by Google Maps and GPS. Replacing guesswork is a precise arrival time based on traffic, construction and alternate routes.
And out of that arrival time comes a new challenge. Beating it. Most of us joke about it but if we’re being honest, we love seeing that time estimate drop a minute or two juggling the maximum speed we can get away with without getting a ticket with the distance we’re traveling and the potential for an extra five miles and hour to beat that initial arrival time.
I wrote a social media post about it this week in fun because I knew the route I was on was taking me around a long city block with a bunch of traffic lights. If anything can cause you to lose the game and see the time kick up a couple minutes, it’s one too many red lights. So…I cut through a mall parking lot that I knew exited on the next road I needed.
At the end of the lot, the time dropped by four minutes.
(By the way, the dictionary definition for Booyah, by: used to express joy, especially over a well-played or victorious moment in sports.)
But regardless of how quickly you get to your destination, you’ve got to know where you’re going and how to get there or there’s no point starting out on the journey.
Working in rodeo ministry, I’ve met a lot of cowboys and bull riders who are either new to their faith or don’t know what they believe and struggle with what their purpose is.
They lack direction and it can lead to a lot of feelings of being discontent and unhappy. It can be bad enough to damage relationships and impact their rodeo and bull riding careers when it starts to affect their riding.
The most important starting place is the gospel.
It’s here that we learn that Jesus came to show us the way.
John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life…
The disciples were still trying to understand what was going on. They still didn’t understand that Jesus was here to die in place of our sins so that we could all, through him, have a place in Heaven, our final destination if we have a saving faith in Jesus.
Sin separates us from God and God is going to both judge and punish unforgiven sin, however big or small. It all gets punished equally and that is eternal separation from Him in hell. But, through a belief that Jesus was the son of God sent here to die for us and that he also rose again and through a repentant heart, asking for our sins to be forgiven through Christ’s sacrifice, we are assured a permanent future in Heaven.
All of John 14:6 says this: Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
The disciple, Thomas, had just said he didn’t know where Jesus was planning to go as Jesus was trying to prepare the disciples for his pending death on the cross. Thomas said he didn’t know the way and Jesus made it clear, it would be through him.
Earlier, Peter had similar questions, letting them know that he would be leaving them for a time but was going to prepare a place for them (and us).
John 13:36 Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, where are you going?” Jesus answered him, “Where I am going you cannot follow me now, but you will follow afterward.”
It doesn’t matter what time we’re arriving or how quickly we can get there; when it comes to Heaven it simply matters that we are going to get there when we’re supposed to.
But for those of us that feel lost or discontent, when we can learn to focus on what is coming and our faith is put in Jesus, we find it’s that faith, through what we learn in the Bible, that guides our steps and helps us make decisions. We don’t know the route we’re going to take to get there while we’re here on Earth, but we know our destination is Heaven and we can learn to take comfort in that, no matter how hard this road sometimes gets or how lost we might sometimes feel.
And isn’t it nice to know that when you get to where you’re going, there’s someone waiting there for you, happy that you’re coming?