Monday, August 29, 2011


Lately life is like the lyrics to that old song...

Detour, there's a muddy road ahead, detour
Paid no mind to what it said
Detour, oh these bitter things I find,
Should have read
That detour sign

This week, the words really hit home as we are planning our healing road trip. There really are detours because large sections of the highway we would usually zip north on are closed due to flooding along the Missouri river. Now this flooding started months ago, and really should be clear by  now, but of course, the waters are taking their time to recede.Even after they recede, the road will need extensive repair. So, detour will be the theme of our first day on the road.

But, you know, it kind of seems a fitting way to start the trip. Life has been just one big detour after another for us.Just this morning, my son and I were checking maps and planning our route. Since we love road trips, we came to the conclusion that the worst thing that will happen is that we will see some places we have never seen before. Not an unpleasant outcome.

Last year, we inadvertently became part of a Homecoming celebration in a small southern town because of a detour. It was great fun actually, people were lining the street waiting for the parade to start, and everyone waved as we drove through. Pretty cool detour.

Now, in life, some of the detours aren't that pleasant, but as long as you keep heading forward, you manage to get through them, or around them. That is actually why we are taking this trip, one more step forward in our healing process. In my experience healing has never been a direct route to begin with. How many times have we had the flu and thought we were over it to be sick again a few hours later. Healing is a process. Not always a pleasant process. The fever that indicates our body is attempting to heal itself is often more uncomfortable than the original problem. But, it is something that has to happen, just like the inevitable detours along life's road.

Detours often make you think that you can't get there from here, but that is never true. Detours only mean you can't get there the way you originally planned. The original route has been compromised somehow, the road is underwater, or being constructed, but there is always an alternate route.Will it feel unfamiliar? Yes. Will it take you over roads you haven't previously traveled? Probably. But, as long as you follow the signs it will get you where you need to go, and once in a while you may find yourself being welcomed as part of a celebration you didn't know was taking place, along a road not to nowhere, but a road to recovery.

Just make sure you heed that detour sign!

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