God's Strange Way of Guiding Us
Delivered By
Pastor David Bauknight
Delivered On
May 31, 2017

     Many of us know about the loggerhead sea turtle. They are those huge turtles, the mammoth ones we might see in a zoo. There’s a story told of one female loggerhead who was getting ready to give birth, so she climbed up onto the sand dune in order to lay her eggs. After she did, she became disoriented. The natural thing for her to do was to walk back to the water and swim away. Instead, she began walking further and further out on the sand dunes. Seeing this, some of the rangers came and put shackles on the turtle because she was too big for them to lift. They flipped her on her back and tied up her legs, so she would not try to flip back over. Then they attached a chain to the shackles and began to drag her upside down with a four-wheeler back to the water. Now, this turtle’s life has been jerked around, messed with, and she’s no doubt in some discomfort despite the best attempts by the rangers to be gentle with her. In order for her life to be saved and her destiny preserved, that was the only viable option. If the rangers stood and shouted at this turtle to turn around, she wouldn’t have understood. They did what they had to do to get her where she really needed to go. 

     We can probably understand this from our human perspective. There are times when we get disoriented, turned around or plain ole bumfuzzled about what we are to do or which way we are to head. Yes, God’s Spirit does speak to us, and He can guide us with His Word. But many times we are like that loggerhead and need to be led, pushed, pulled, flipped or prodded. I believe I am safe to say that at times we need to rehear what the psalmist said, “Do not be like a horse or mule, without understanding, that must be controlled with bit and bridle or else it will not come near you,” (Psalm 32:9). God cares too deeply for us to let us keep going down the wrong path or in the wrong direction. Often, He will drop an unexpected detour, a strange twist of circumstances or a change in our plans to get us turned around. Sometimes, that may mean being flipped on our back, or shackled by our feet. It may mean being disoriented even within our own disorientation.

     At other times that might mean being drug along until we finally feel the familiarity of where we ought to be. Only when the turtle felt the water, could she be untied and put right-side up again. Once she realized where she was, she was set free. In order for her to get to her destiny, she had to be reoriented in the right direction. God sometimes enters our situations in strange ways because He truly wants to show us the right way. It might be in detours or a required jerk or flip, maybe even some tweaks and pulls. We may yell in our hearts, “What are you doing to me God? Where are you taking me? Why can’t I understand?” Often, because of our activity, God answers too quietly for us to hear over our own shouts, “I’m taking you exactly where you need to be. Trust Me.” Fellow travelers, we all have the opportunity to hear our Savior’s voice. But when we are more about us, (what we want or humanly crave) then we have the tendency to go off on tangents that are not for our good or the good of those around us.

     So, in all things, we must pray to see where God is at work, or where He truly wants us to be, or what He wants us to do before we get disoriented by focusing on our selfish ideas or notions. We have an awesome opportunity to grow in our discipleship and witness to others to help grow other disciples. Let’s get back on the right path...HIS path. Let’s put ourselves in the right place...where we can not only observe but mimic our Lord in our thoughts, words and deeds. He truly is our best guide, so we must trust and follow Him...before trusting self....

Pastor David