“I don’t think I can find my way back to my motel,” said the woman walking beside me as we made our way back to our cars.
She tripped over something on the ground and almost fell. I grabbed her arm to guide her toward the parking area.
I paused for a moment and looked up once more at the stars which shone bright and beautiful in the clear sky out where there was minimal light pollution.
We had just enjoyed the evening session of the Inner Circle songwriting conference at the home of Babbie Mason, located a little more than an hour outside of Atlanta–“out in the country.”
Even as I earlier drove to the house on the winding, hilly roads–before the sun had set–I wondered about my ability to make it back to my motel, which was fifteen minutes away. Being from a heavily populated part of Florida, I was accustomed to driving on straight streets with plenty of light. And it shocked me that these narrow two lane roads had a speed limit of 55 miles per hour.
After introducing myself to Kim, and discovering her motel was right next to mine, I offered, “You can follow me.”
She seemed at the point of terror as she approached her car, so I considered driving her to her motel in my car. But then I didn’t know how she’d get back in the morning for the next session. I was getting a ride with someone who didn’t have room in her vehicle for yet another passenger.
“Wait right here,” I said and ran inside to see if anyone else could bring her back in the morning if I gave her a ride.
When I got back outside, Kim was gone.
At the stop sign a little ways down the road, I found her sitting in her car. I walked up to the window.
“I’m glad you came.” she said. “I can’t go on alone.”
“Let me go around you, and you follow me,” I instructed, trying to sound confident.
Kim did follow me that evening. The hills seemed higher and the winding roads windier in the dark night. I maintained my speed around 45 mph, in case Kim couldn’t keep up if I went faster, which I didn’t want to do anyway for fear of driving off of the road.
The amazing thing was that as I led the way for Kim–someone more fearful than me–my fear diminished. I took my eyes off of myself and had as my goal, “to lead her safely back.”
We did make it back to our motels, and Kim thanked me profusely.
I couldn’t help but think as I drifted off to sleep that my Christian life at times is like my drive on those dark and to me treacherous country roads. God has often brought people into my life who have led me through my dark nights. Sometimes I’ve been the one leading others–even when I was going through my own dark night and didn’t feel confident as a leader.
But through every circumstance, as I’ve entrusted it to Him, I have eventually sensed His presence and peace and embraced the knowledge that He was the One leading the way.
These words from Scripture assure me God is intimately involved in helping me deal with darkness in my life.
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty…He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield…You will not fear the terror of night…Psalm 91:1 & 4,5 NIV
Now as I think back to dark country roads, I ponder not just my fear, but God’s faithfulness that night and during every fearful time of my life.
What about you? Is there someone God is calling you to help lead through a dark time? Can you think of those who have guided you? Thank God for leading You safely through darkness.