Shortest distance may be slow

Interstate highways are built to minimize turns and to maximize speed. They are designed to get us from near one point to near another point. They are fun in an efficient kind of way, allowing us to set the cruise control and easily consume distance.

Most of my life, however, isn’t spent on interstates. It is spent in the twists and turns of neighborhood streets, moving slowly, dealing with traffic, stopping and starting, backtracking. Most of my driving life I can’t set the cruise control. I have to pay attention to where I’m going. I feel as though I am making no progress at all. I wish I could have Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang. I wish I were in a Jeep commercial and could drive over the terrain.

Yesterday Bill said something about the ebb and flow of life. Sometimes a good friend says, “just when we think we are getting ahead….” A friend doesn’t want to have to start at the bottom of another company. A young woman says, “let’s go back to when you started teasing me in elementary school…and start over.”

When I look at the winding road sign, I realize that half the time I face east, half the time I face west, I move slower that I want to, but ultimately I get to where I need to be. And I think about my life and the lives of my friends and I wonder if maybe we missed the winding road sign.

Think about it. We often waste hours (days, weeks, years) wondering what the next thing is. We wonder which way to go. We think that things on this road aren’t going the way they are supposed to go. We are angry and hurt and scared.  We keep looking for a sign that will tell us which way to go, because this way just doesn’t work. After all, we seem to be going backwards. We stop next to the road in our confusion.

Maybe we missed the sign that was hidden by a branch (because the roads close to home, the roads that are not interstates always have untended trees). We missed the sign that said, “you are on the right road, but it is going to twist, but don’t let that trouble you. The Maker of the Road knows that it will get you to where you need to be.”

In your search for signs, consider the possibility that the winding road, while slow, is exactly the right road.

What do you think?

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3 responses to “Shortest distance may be slow

  1. I am LOVING your road sign piece. It’s been so exciting and interesting to see how they fit into our lives.

    Wandering around is certainly a component of our days.

  2. ditto Chris Brogan – wish I’d thought of it.

  3. I sent this to a wonderful friend of mine who is struggling with some choices in her life. And, of course, deep down, I have to admit there are things *I* could learn in this department.

    Thanks, Jon!