Finding the Right Place to Turn Around

When I’m driving somewhere new and I miss my turn, I’ll drive miles and miles out of the way looking for the “perfect spot” where I can turn around.

I think through lots of things:

How easy will it be to pull back out onto the road? I need to turn around in the “right direction” so that it is easy to get back in the flow of traffic.

Is it gravel or paved? You see, I am quite wary of flat tires. Once on my way back to college, I had 2 flats at the same time because I ran over a plank with nails on the side of 421 to Boone. I had to “hitch” a ride with a stranger. (Not the best of plans!)

Do I have enough time to turn around? I don’t want to do anything so quickly that I disrupt the driving of the person/people behind me.

See – there’s a lot going on in my mind during the whole “turnaround” scenario.

Sometimes, I am so caught up in all the “stuff” in my brain, that I will go MILES out of the way when truthfully, I could have turned around 30 times already! I waste time, gas, and energy!

Life is like that. We set out on our paths, take wrong turns or even miss our turn. Then, we get so far down the road that it becomes difficult, even inconvenient, to turn around. But if we don’t, we end up in places and situations that we really don’t want or need to go.

Today is Ash Wednesday. It marks the beginning of the season of Lent. The 40 days prior to Easter (not counting Sundays) where we look deeply into ourselves, see the sin we have in our lives, and turn from that sin so that we can live a life of Love.

Today I challenge us to begin a journey together. I challenge us to look in the mirror and be really honest with what we see. Let us truly explore what path we are on. Then be willing to do some pretty abrupt “turnarounds” so that we can travel on the path that leads to wholeness in and amidst all things.

What path are you on?

Is it a path that leads to life and love?

Or is our path one that leads to self-absorption? Caring for ourselves first and letting the rest “fall where they may.”

Is it a path that leads to selflessness and generosity?

Or is our path such that we focus on building ourselves up, disregarding the needs of those around us?

Is it a path that leads to humility, mercy, and grace?

Or is our path one of judgment, condemnation, and scrutiny?

A time of “revamping ourselves” so that we get rid of the stuff that burdens us, that gets in the way of us living a life connected to The Divine. I invite us to “turn around” and travel a path that leads to wholeness, life, and love.

There is no perfect “turnaround spot.” The best spot for us is here, and now.

I invite you to begin this journey with me on this Ash Wednesday.


28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”