Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: MAP (01/31/19)
TITLE: That was then, This is now
By Emmanuella Ellis
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To get to my cousin’s home in Teshie, I was given directions by a kind gentleman on my first visit. I was parked in front of a kiosk just off the main road when I met the gentleman. Based on the directions I received, I was supposed to turn left unto the street close to a woman who sold packs of tissue papers neatly arranged on a table. I was then to go straight on until I saw a signboard with the words People Clinic boldly inscribed on it.
A few meters ahead of the signboard, I will find a woman selling fried yams and fish. I was told that she sells under a neem tree which is in front of an old house painted yellow. Just when I saw that woman, I was to turn right at the junction and then I will find the school which is next to my cousin’s house. All I needed to know was how to get to the school.
I had never paid attention to my surroundings until that day. I did get there in one peace, asking a couple of people for clarification and confirmation as I went along. On my second visit after a month, I decided to go all by myself without asking anyone. I got this, I thought to myself. Well, I was lying to myself. Everything I had changed. I got so lost that I couldn’t even find my way back home.
I finally had to ask someone for directions a second time. Apparently, the clinic had closed down and moved to a different location, so the signboard had been taken down. The woman who sold the fried yams whom I was told was there every day from 9 am to 5 pm was no longer there. She had been asked to leave that location by the new owners of the old yellow painted house. The house had been renovated, painted white and walled. The neem had also been cut down and the street to the house had been tared. All these changes explained why I went on straight ahead and took different turns to find the yam seller and the yellow painted house.
I had learnt that I could not trust the directions provided by people because on my second visit, I had two people give me totally different directions. People who had no idea about your destination will throw you off. I couldn’t also make the same trip to the same destination based on previous information because it could change within days. When getting to your destination depends on people, it can be quite stressful and simply unreliable. I thought about how great it would be if everyone could have access to a standard chart or plan that could be used as a guide to get to their desired destinations.
After a couple of years when I went back home, this thought had materialised. I found people checking for directions on their phones with an app that presented them with a good view of their surroundings and directions to their destinations. I was the one being perceived as living in the past when I asked for directions and was told to use google.
Our spiritual journey as Christians isn’t any different, I find. In the old testament times, the Israelites relied only on the guidance provided by people (priests). It had to be what they said, or they did nothing. We find in the Bible situations where these prophets were misleading and drew the people away from where God wanted them to be spiritual with respect to their relationship with Him. Now, we all have the Bible and the HolySpirit.
We don’t have to rely on the words of anyone on our journey to get to our destination. We will, therefore, be doing ourselves very little good if we ignore the HolySpirit and His guidance for us individually and focus solely on what people say. People don’t always know everything, some of them can be misleading knowing that there can be wolves in sheep clothing living among us. We all have different paths and journeys, the HolySpirit is the only One to lead you rightly and not people who have no idea about your journey.
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