It was time for summer vacation, and we had planned a trip to the mountains of North Carolina. My daughter had mastered the art of riding a bicycle only a few months earlier and was anxious to take her bike with us. After several stops in various spots along the way, we settled in for a few days at a KOA campground in Franklin, North Carolina.
Very proud of her accomplishment, my daughter asked if she could ride her bicycle. After giving her a little bit of motherly advice, off she went. Little did I know what had occurred on that jaunt on her bike. The manager of the camp ground had seen her riding and had stopped her with some very wise words of wisdom, but to a seven year old, it was nonsense. Now bear in mind, she was from Florida and had only been used to flatlands, and she enjoyed swimming more than anything. The manager had told her she should not be riding in areas where there was rock scattered on the roadways as there was a possibility she would run over one or more of them thereby causing her to get hurt. She conveniently failed to tell me of the warning she had received.
One evening as I was preparing our evening meal in our RV, I heard a knock on the door, and when I answered the door, it was a fellow camper bringing my daughter to me all skinned up. There was hardly a place on her body that was not bleeding, scraped or bruised, but she wasn’t nearly as concerned about her injuries as I was. In fact, I considered the possibility of taking her to the nearest hospital emergency room. Her only concern was that we not tell the manager. Then and only then, did the whole story come out.
Was the warning the manager had given important? Yes, indeed, it was important. Because my daughter failed to heed the warning, she suffered the consequences. Her scrapes and bruises healed in time, but she could no longer enjoy the campground swimming pool during the remainder of our vacation.
A few weeks later we were at a campground much closer to home, and again my daughter was involved in a bicycle accident. This time she was riding about dusk and thought she would make a shortcut back to our trailer so she rode through the campground rather than keeping on the paved areas designated for riding or driving. There was a rope stretched across the area, and due to the time of day and the coloration of the rope, she did not see it and ran into it. As a result, she received a very bad rope burn on her neck. She paid dearly for this poor choice.
First of all, again she could not swim, and secondly she was very much afraid that her awful looking neck injury would prohibit her from being the flower girl in her uncle’s wedding. You see, she had volunteered for the coveted position of flower girl. Her neck did heal enough before the wedding, although even a slight scar remains to this day.
Now Karen was a child when she made the poor choices. I wish that those were the only poor decisions she ever made as I did not like to see her suffer, but unfortunately, there were others. None of us are exempt from the foolishness which clouds our minds.
God has given us the greatest guidebook of all – the Bible. Sadly enough, few see the importance of spending quality time in the Word. The Psalmist tells us in Psalm 119:105 that God’s Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our paths. Why do we need a lamp to light our pathway? Simply because we find ourselves in many dark times when we do not know whether to turn left or right, to continue forward or stay stationary. Do we forge ahead without regard to our expected destination or outcome? If so, we may find ourselves on a dead end street with no room to turn around.
King Solomon offered words of wisdom in Proverbs 3:5-6 which should be a sobering message for all mankind. Let’s see what it says. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”
Would we plan a trip across the country without consulting a map? It would hardly be a wise decision. Should we plan our day without consulting the One who created us? The answer is clear and precise. As frail humans we are incapable of foreseeing the future and where our choices will take us. Let us allow the One who knows the end from the beginning to lead us in the way of everlasting life.