By Joe Monds
Early in geometry we learned, “the shortest distance between two points is a straight line.” But sometimes, as we look at what God is doing in our lives, we wonder if He doesn’t think that the shortest distance between two points is a zigzag. God sometimes takes us on a zigzag path to the good plans He has for us. We may see these situations as an unnecessary detour, but they are necessary diversions for your good and God’s purposes.
In Exodus 13, God purposefully takes Israel from Goshen to Canaan by an indirect route. The reason for the zigzag path is because of some obstacle on the straight-line path would keep them from reaching their goal. The straight path that would have lead the Israelites to the promised land geographically, would have also led them to a war between the Philistine and Egyptians that they were underwhelmingly unequipped for at the time. God had to first take them to the desert to convince them of His faithfulness and commitment before taking them into Canaan.
The reason for the zigzag path that we are on in life is because of some obstacle on the straight-line path would prevent us from reaching our goal. Our career advancement might be delayed until a difficult person is removed, or a necessary skill is learned. Ministry opportunities might wait until pride is less of a danger. The list could go on. God in His goodness leads us on an alternate path to get to a promised destination. Along the way He gives us reminders of His good intentions and a tangible sense of His presence. Follow Him without fear down the zigzag path called life.