Dear Friends,

I grew up in a town without a single stoplight.  Madras, Oregon is at the crossroads of Highway 97, which goes from The Dalles to Klamath Falls, and Highway 26, which goes from Vale to Portland (actually, all the way to Seaside).  So we had a lot of traffic. There is even more traffic today, but there are now several stoplights and there is one-way traffic on the two major routes through town.  So traffic flows pretty well.  But back then, it was often a long wait for traffic to clear enough that it was safe to pull out onto Main Street.  The joke was we had to wait for the stoplight to change in Portland.

Stoplights simplify driving considerably.  If it’s green, you can go.  If it’s yellow, you’d better slow down.  If it’s red, you need to stop. The light tells you what to do.  All you have to do is obey.

It would be easier in our spiritual lives if it were like that.  Why can’t God give us clear signals, red, yellow, and green, about what we are supposed to be doing in our lives? Yet, when you think about that you realize that God probably knows best.  If knowing God’s will were that simple, why bother to read the Bible?  Why bother to pray?  Why make “40 Days of Community” a priority during Lent?  Why make the effort to develop such a relationship with Jesus that you know (never with absolute certainty, but with as much certainty as we human beings can have) what Jesus would want you to do?

When the power goes out and the stoplights stop working, you have to really pay attention to what you are doing.  No more daydreaming while you drive.  I kind of think God wants us to live our lives that way.

In Christ,