Steven Valadez

A friend and I are planning some hiking and camping trips for this fall.  We’ve been plotting out where we want to go, which areas we want to see, and what the best routes to travel will be.  We’re planning on wandering around the local mountains and seeing what there is to see.

The other day, I was thinking that it might be time to buy a GPS for hiking.  I wanted something I could load maps onto, mark waypoints, track traveled routes, and determine elevation.  There were some models that had two-way radios built in, and one that would even show me the location of my friend, and anyone else around who had a GPS.  I found one that I liked.  It had all of the features that I wanted.  It was lightweight and waterproof.  I liked it a lot.  Then I started reading the user reviews.  “Battery life is low.”  “GPS signal very weak in thick trees.”  “The screen is hard to see in sunlight.”  “Takes up to 30 minutes to determine accurate location.”  “Maps are occasionally incorrect.”

I was disappointed by the reviews and decided to stick with my good old USGS Topographic Quadrangle (that’s nerd talk for “map”).  I learned how to navigate using a map and compass a long time ago.  Even though a new GPS would be nice, a map hasn’t let me down yet.  It’s not new and it’s not popular, but it tells me everything I need, and hasn’t been wrong.  Maps don’t run out of batteries, and maps don’t need a clear sky to work right.  It was lightweight and they even put a special coating on the map to make it waterproof.  It could do everything I wanted and it was everything I needed.  Even if I did have fancy GPS, I would still have that map in my pocket.

The Bible is kind of like that map.  It’s often not very popular, and it’s not new, but it’s never wrong.  The Bible is always accurate, and will always help get you back on track.  It has everything you need.

We often get caught up in what’s new or what popular when we’re trying to figure things out.  When we have worries or questions, we look to experts, books, magazines and websites.  Sometimes, we forget that we already have what we need: the Bible.  When we don’t know which path to take, when we think we‘re lost, or when we need to get back on track, the Bible is like our map. 

In 2 Timothy 3:16, the Bible says “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness.”  Teaching tells us which path to take.  Rebuking tells us when we are on the wrong path.  Correcting shows us how to get back on the right path, and training is what keeps us on the path.

The next time you’re trying to figure out where you are, or where you’re headed, remember that God’s Word has everything you need.

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