I used to love going on road trips. I’d buy great snacks, burn fantastic CDs and print out maps from mapquest.
I’d plan out which unusual roadside oddities we’d see along the way, a giant peach, a Volkswagen turned into a spider, maybe a massive Babe the Blue Ox statue.
Road tripping was a time of deep conversation, adventure and freedom.
I think this likely stopped when we had kids and every moment in the car became something to endure, to survive.
Now road trips find me with bloodshot eyes and Toy Story ringing in my ears while sippy cups roll around what used to be the floorboards, now an inch deep with toys and wrappers.
I’ve never been a patient person, I’m a person fond of immediate results. Point A to Point B with no mess in the middle.
But right now we’re both in-between jobs, and we’re in-between houses
We’re very in-between right now. We’re in a season of waiting for the next thing.
I think the secret to living in and loving “here” is to realize that, as the old cliché says, “Life isn’t a destination, it’s a journey.”
We can’t live always waiting to arrive somewhere else
We have to delve into the in-between because it’s just as steeped in God as the arrival will be, perhaps more so.
If you flip through the Old Testament, you’ll see that it was in the in-between seasons that they found miracles and built Ebenezers, stones and monuments to the God who showed up in the middle.
Here I raise my Ebenezer, hither by thy help I’ve come, and I hope by thy good pleasure safely to arrive at home.
Not home yet, but finding God in the in-between. On the journey.
Like Jacob with his rock pillow, shocked to realize that God was there and he didn’t even know it.
Or the Israelites who built up stones to remind themselves how God showed up on the journey as they traversed the raging Jordan.
I want to tell stories of the stones we set up in the middle, the miracles that happened at the end are somewhat expected, but the ones that take our breath away on the Journey are to remind us that God met us where we were.
They’re a part of the story we tell when we speak of God’s faithfulness.
They remind us that God isn’t only interested in the arrival, more so the Journey, the sweet right here.