Express or Ground Delivery? (Acts 16:6-7)

A well known package and freight delivery company gives the sender the option to send their  deliveries by air express or ground delivery. Express options comes with a guarantee that a delivery can be made by 8AM the next morning or by noon. Ground delivery can guarantee delivery by the next day but not by a specific time. There are also additional options that can allow an air express delivery to arrive by 2nd or 3rd day.

If one were to send a package via air express, it must, by definition, be sent by air and routed to the local collecting airport, then loaded onto to express delivery vans to be delivered. If one were to send a package via ground delivery, the package would be delivered and transferred through a series of trucks until arriving at its final destination. All of this seems intuitive.

But there is an interesting quirk to this very efficient system. I am located in a suburb of Los Angeles. If I was delivering a package to a location that was located across the street, and I chose the next day air express option, this package would first be taken to LAX, loaded on to the company’s airplane, and taken to San Francisco. Then, in San Francisco, the package would be placed on a plane and routed back to LAX, where it then would be loaded on an express delivery van and delivered to the destination. Thus, even though I could send the package by ground delivery and have it arrive at approximately the same time, because I chose the air express option, it must take a long, circuitous route via an airline to arrive at the same location at approximately the same time. Seems inefficient but it was because I chose this delivery method.

There are many times when God leads me along a longer circuitous route, a route that perhaps I think is not very efficient or even a waste of time. But although I think I know better, I am continually proven wrong when I can look back and see God’s hand guiding the situation and events.

Now when they had gone through Phrygia and the region of Galatia, they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia. After they had come to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit did not permit them.
Acts 16:6-7

I wonder if the Apostle Paul felt frustrated when he attempted to preach the Gospel to those in the region of Galatia and Bithynia but was prevented by God? After all, wasn’t this his purpose, to preach the Gospel to all seekers? And yet, while we may intuitively think that this should have happened, it was not God’s plans and he redirected Paul in another direction. Later, we do learn that the Gospel did reach these peoples. But for this moment in time, what seemed intuitive, was not.

Like the delivery company, we may think we can design a methodology to accomplish our purposes in a much more efficient manner by following our common sense or intuition. God does, indeed, sometimes speak to us to reveal a greater insight. But in other times, we must obey God’s calling and accept His direction as sovereign.

Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.