Stuck In Reverse

Day 2 of 10 • This day’s reading


How Did You Get Here?

It was a beautiful day—the kind that seemed perfect in every way. I’d traveled to Oregon on a photography trip, and a few days into my venture, found myself driving alongside a rambling river with numerous waterfalls. Because the light wasn’t quite right for that location, I continued on before happening upon a mirror-like lake in the distance. I pulled the car over and began taking shot after shot. Satisfied with the photographs I’d captured, I decided to double-back to the waterfalls now that it was later in the day and the lighting just right for that location. It was at that moment when I thought to check the gas gauge. To my shock, the fuel was on empty—and I hadn’t passed a single gas station along the way. Scanning my map, it confirmed the nearest town was miles away, and I didn’t have enough gas to get there. 

It appeared I was stuck.

What do you do when you realize you’re in the wrong place, stuck in reverse when you should be moving forward? Many people panic or simply collapse and give up. But God never wants us to do that. He desires for us to trust Him at all times and in all situations. We must remember God’s waiting for us to call out to Him so He can work in our circumstances and straighten out the problems we’re facing. When our hearts are turned toward Him in sincere devotion, He’ll speak to us and show us the right way to go every time.

Perhaps you feel as though you’re totally out of fuel. How do you pick up the pieces of your life after suffering a deep blow of discouragement? Is there a way out of the storm that seems to have broken over your life? The answer is yes. God knows the surest route for you to take to the closest fueling station. In fact, the distance is usually no more than 12 to 16 inches … the distance it is for you to fall to your knees in prayer. When we cry out to God, He always listens and never fails to answer.

So that’s exactly what I did when I realized my car was on empty. I prayed. “Lord, You know how far the next gas station is from where I’m located. You’re totally in control, and I’m asking you to send the help I need.” In faith, I turned the key in the ignition. Before I could put the car in drive, a man pulled up and parked his truck in front of me. Believing he was God’s answer to my prayer, I walked over and asked him, “Can you tell me where I can find a gas station?”

“Sure,” he pointed, “go up this road about a quarter of a mile and turn left—you’ll see one on your right.” 

I thought for a moment about what I’d have done had he not stopped. More than likely, I would’ve headed back the way I’d come and run out of gas. You probably would’ve, too. When we realize we’re in trouble, our first inclination is to rush back to a point of safety. God, however, knows the beginning from the end (Isa. 46:9-10). He knows the right route for us to travel—and the shortest and safest way is always the route He chooses.