You’re Not A Train, But Your Engineer Is Still In Control

The train tracks run right through the middle of town, parallel to the river itself. You can hear the whistle blow from anywhere you are. Passenger trains, coal trains, box cars carrying things from one coast of America to the other - they go through Ottumwa every single day.

Once you figure out the train schedule, you know when you can and when you can’t cross from the north side of town to the south. If you don’t time it right, you’ll be stuck sitting at the crossing, waiting for the long string of train cars to end. Count them if you like, but it won’t make them move by any faster.

If you take a look at the steel rails the train rides on, they’re strong and they’re metal and they’re made to last. They don’t allow for any deviation from the course because that’s how trains derail and destroy. The purpose of those tracks is to hold the train in exactly the place the engineer wants it to go.

Life lesson: You are not a train.

Common sense, I know. If you are reading this, you are not a train. Trains don’t read. But you and I can make a striking comparison between that train and our walk with the Lord.

Yes, God has a plan for our lives, but we're not restricted to the tracks like a train is. The train engineer wants the train to stay exactly where it is, where he knows the path is to get to the destination. If it moves even a little bit away from those rails, it can cause damage, destruction and even death. There's no messing around with anything on that train.

In contrast, our Heavenly Father knows our path and our destination, but it pleases Him to watch us walk where He leads. There is no set route that God forces us to travel - it brings Him much more joy to watch us turn to Him for direction. We will always arrive at His Point B, but your journey there from Point A will be much different than mine. And that's how God wants it.

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Jeremiah 29:11

It's a familiar verse, one that you can clearly see applied as the train passes through town. The engineer knows the expected end, and there is no deviation along the way.

God gives us an expected end, and He knows the path He wants us to take to get there. But we are not pulled along like the train behind the engine. Instead, we walk next to the Engineer as we travel together. There is never any uncertainty about arriving safely at the end of our travels - to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. Our God's work is perfect, and we can look forward to each step of the way.

We're not tied to the tracks like the train, but living with hope and peace about the journey before us. I don't know what the days and years ahead may hold, but I know who holds my day and years. God makes the destination worth the travel.


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