Wow! I can’t believe it’s been almost a month since my last blog! As I mentioned to someone on Twitter a couple of weeks ago, I’m still alive and shifting. A lot has happened in my world in the last month and a half…some good, some not.
I’ve been running through the gears pretty hard lately. As the days get longer, I’ve got more hours to run. I’ll clarify for those unfamiliar with oversize loads. In most states, I am only allowed to run during daylight hours. This means a couple of things. When the days are shorter, I don’t stop for anything since I may only have nine hours of daylight to drive. The morning quart of coffee does not seem like a great idea about 10:00 am…but I don’t stop. When I do shut down and find a place to park at night I’m usually exhausted.
When the days are longer, I still need to maximize my day, but I’m able to generally get in a full eleven. In both cases though, I run into issues with curfew. Most major cities do not allow me within their city limits during morning and evening commutes due to size and safety. Because of this, I rarely stop because I’m always chasing the next city curfew.
Enough of that. What I really have on my mind today are directions. Since the majority of my 18-wheel experience is limited to pulling either a step deck or RGN, that’s all I can personally speak to. I have to assume every other driver faces the same challenges I do regarding horrible directions.
Recently I called a sale yard in southeastern Oklahoma I was to load some tractors at. I asked the girl on the other end of the phone to please give me directions to get to their location. She put me on hold and forwarded me to someone else who ultimately did not pick up the line. After five minutes of waiting, I hung up and called back. Someone else gave me the directions. It turns out, I only had to make a single turn off the main highway to find them. Simple as that. Why couldn’t she have just told me to turn at highway X and I would find them a mile and a half later.
What’s worse than this? Bad directions. A lady in Miami giving me directions to their business and used the Golden Gate Expressway as a landmark. Then she says, and I quote, “It’s not really called that. That’s just what we call it.” Seriously? Why don’t you just tell me to take a left at Bob’s house and another left where the green shed used to be that blew away in the hurricane.
I have found the worst words you can hear when receiving directions are, “You can’t miss it.” I disagree. I most certainly have…often. I’ve been lost in most major cities in the US. Usually when you’re really lost, it’s not on a truck route. Hello residential neighborhood!
Who/where you get your directions from is extremely important. Maybe I shouldn’t be so cynical when I am forwarded to someone else for my routing. Bad directions can cause us so much trouble. I can’t be the only person who, when lost, keeps getting further and further off course until I find myself in a really bad situation. The best thing to do then is to simply stop. Turn on the 4-ways and seek some direction.
Our lives work the same way. Where we get our direction from is critical. If we receive bad directions, we end up further and further from where we need to be. The ultimate trouble however, may not be immediate. A ship that is 1 degree off course may not immediately be in danger. If that same ship travels 1000 miles being 1 degree off course the results could be catastrophic. The same is true with us. One step in the wrong direction can be corrected rather easily. 100o steps may take a significant effort and who knows where we will be.
The atlas we should all use for direction is not published by Rand McNally. It’s published by God and it’s called the Bible. In it, God tells us the exact route to take for our lives that will lead to the ultimate destination of heaven. Even though we may follow His directions, it does not guarantee we won’t have some rough roads or maybe even an accident or two. There may be some difficult times along the way as well.
Jesus said, “At my Father’s direction I have done many good works. For which one are you going to stone me?” – John 10:32
A year or two ago I was going through one of the rough patches life tends to throw at us. I wrote a personal mission statement that I felt defined my life and the direction I intend to go:
I will use my many gifts, talents and abilities for their God-intended purpose. By representing God, myself and my company well, and in that order, success is inevitable.
What does this have to do with direction? God’s road map ensures success. Success though depends on whose standards you are measuring. By worldly standards, you may think you are a failure. This I know firsthand…been there, done that. Keeping in mind that the world is temporal and heaven is eternal, shouldn’t we be more concerned with achieving God’s standards? This does not mean we cannot have both. Be careful however, in how you try to order your successes.
Uzziah sought God during the days of Zechariah, who taught him to fear God. And as long as the king sought guidance from the Lord, God gave him success – 2 Chronicles 26:5
God wants us to succeed. He has given us the perfect directions for doing so. He knows we are going to try and take a shortcut and do it our own way. When this happens, we need just to ask him for directions from our current location. He’ll get us back on track. We just can’t be too proud to ask.
Thanks for reading! Remember…keep the rubber down and the antennas pointed up.
Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org