Read Ephesians 1:11–12
We as believers have been chosen and predestined to work out everything in conformity with the purpose and will of God.
Nick and I have a Global Positioning System (GPS) in our car, and Nick loves it. He gets in the car, types in our destination, and immediately the familiar, soothing voice (in my opinion kind of creepy, but comforting) tells us she is coming up with the most direct route for our trip. Nick waits until she is done and then follows her instructions obediently. She has become such a constant companion during our driving outings that we have even given her a name: Matilda. Whenever we find ourselves lost, Matilda can always show us how to get where we want to go.
Nick has a special affection for Matilda. He not only loves that he never has to stop and ask for directions, but I think he’s also happy because he doesn’t have to listen to me telling him my opinions on the best route (which are invariably correct, of course). I, on the other hand, often get quite annoyed by Matilda. She can be such a know-it-all sometimes, and there are days (although never when Nick is in the car) when I can detect a bit of condescension in her happy, velvety voice. Sometimes just to show her who’s boss, I disobey her vocal navigations and pass up the turn she is insisting I make. I think it’s funny to hear her start to flip out as I pass up the turn, and then just as I do, go silent. But after a few seconds, the ever-faithful Matilda gets over her meltdown and says, “Rerouting. Please stand by. Rerouting.”
When I hear Matilda repeat the phrase “rerouting,” it reminds me of the Church’s core mission. In a sense, we are God’s spiritual GPS, sprinkled throughout the planet. He has placed us in our environments to help people who are lost reroute their lives. Jesus came to seek and save that which was lost (see Mark 16:15), and we as his Body are to continue this mission.
Just like Matilda—only hopefully in a much less annoying voice—we get to influence the people around us who have not yet chosen to believe in Jesus. By the example of our lives and through the relationships we build, we can communicate the deep love God has for them and gently steer them closer to his destination for their lives.
Do you know someone who has somehow taken a wrong turn and ended up off the beaten path? You can help that person find the main road again. Not by judging or preaching but by walking along side and showing the love of God.