The Motorway

Thursday, April 7, 2005

Proverbs 19:21 – Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. (ESV)

We have moved house this year. This included a trip on the motorway up north in a van to collect some furniture. As we went on our way, I noticed trains of articulated lorries (semi-trailers) nose-to-tail. Business was busy delivering. I know what busy looks like because I used to drive 45,000 miles a year.

On our way home, we saw a lorry that, amongst the busyness, had come to an abrupt halt at right angles to the carriageway. It crossed all three lanes, the hard shoulder, and the central reservation (median). As we sped past on the other side of the motorway, we saw the police looking on, pondering. Presumably, they were awaiting the necessary heavy lifting gear to remove the obstacle. The subsequent queue of backed-up vehicles went on for several miles — with no way out.

As we continued, I pondered the fate of the unknowing occupants of the vehicles driving into such a blind alley. Like so many others, they were heading into a situation from which they would not be able to get out. In fact, the police had closed the preceding junction (interchange) to divert the traffic. The motorway was already backed up with stationary vehicles that contained a thwarted involuntary assembly. They were going to be there for some time — until the lorry was removed.

Everyday situations stop our progress: they stop the routine melee of the day, stop our careers, or even stop our living. We, who had assumed so much, find ourselves rudely brought up short, unable to continue with what we could do yesterday without a second thought, faced with the prospect of a complete stop.

Maybe we were just too captivated by our preoccupations to see the signs?

However we find ourselves unexpectedly postponed, God is with us. Nothing can stop that — except our preoccupations!

Prayer: Lord, we give You the glory and honour, for You are the one and only God Who is able to deliver. Nothing can halt Your progress. Nothing can thwart Your purposes. You alone are worthy of our praise. Whatever diverts us from You now will one day be brought to an end. In Your mercy, capture our attention, and speak into our lives Your illumination. Amen.

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About the author:

Rod Marshall <>
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England

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