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Thursday, September 5, 2013

We went to Florida for a week this summer. I knew we'd have a rental car so I was smart enough to bring my GPS to help us get around. On one of the days we were driving from Orlando to Lakeland to drop our son off at music camp, about a 45-minute drive.

Even with my GPS giving directions, I was tense as we drove.  We were talking about the church we
had just visited, trying to drive safely in multi-lane traffic and taking in all of the sights. Do you know that Disney World has Mickey ears at their power substation? How cool is that? What attention to detail. On top of it all, we were hungry and looking for a place to each lunch, (eventually found Cracker Barrel...southern fried chicken...mmm good).

There was just too much input to process. Since I'd never been there, everything was new. There were no landmarks I recognized to let me know we were on the right track (yeah, even my GPS has been known to be wrong).

Fast forward four days. It was time to return to Lakeland to pick up our son. Same trip, but this time, totally relaxed. I knew where we were going. I recognized the signs and sights we had previously seen. I had a passing familiarity with our surroundings.

We who follow Christ, have the privilege and responsibility of leading people toward Jesus. Whether we do it from a stage or not, the challenge is the same.

But we can't lead people to places we've never been.

If we don't spend time in the presence of God, how will we help other people find him?

Joshua loved to spend time in the presence of God. Exodus 33 tells us that when Moses left the tent where he met with God, Joshua would linger in the tent. Just him and the afterglow of the Living God who had just been there.

And look at how he led. A whole nation owes him a debt of gratitude because he led them into the Promised Land.

What kind of leader will you be, one who stumbles along, hoping to miraculously run into God? Or, one who has staked out the route ahead of time, able to enjoy the journey with the people God has entrusted to your leadership?