stop sign

I scrambled out of the car, slammed the door, and kicked the rear tire. Squinting into the harsh glare of a flashlight, my first words were louder than necessary, “If you’re going to ticket me, then ticket me! I just want to get home.” Not giving the police officer a chance to respond, I continued, still annoyed, still defiantly frustrated, “I’m tired. Really—I just want to get home.”

Yes, I was tired, but the police just needed me to slow down and stop—at a STOP sign. Sadly, it wasn’t the first time. I’ve hurried through more than one STOP sign in life. I’ve also overlooked and ignored other signs and mileposts. Through it all, I’ve learned the hard way (and the expensive way!) that road signs are an important part of safe travel, particularly the signs in my travels with God.

I’ve always wanted to follow God more closely—when it’s convenient, when it’s easy, when it feels good. But it’s not always convenient or easy, and too often I’ve ignored the spiritual guidance that could help. I’ve hurried through God’s STOP signs, overlooked and ignored His other signs. Too many times I thought I knew more, knew better. And then there were those times I just didn’t pay attention.

In my second book, Signs in Life: Finding Direction in Our Travels with God, I share my own mistakes and shortcomings both on the road and in my faith. Each chapter takes its title from a specific sign and opens with a related driving antic, some silly, some cringe-worthy. Anecdotes illustrate the spiritual signs that have highlighted my journey. Stories of Moses are woven throughout. God also used divine signs to help him navigate a forty-year journey in the wilderness. Together we take a metaphorical road trip.

I didn’t always recognize God’s signs in the moment, but looking back, I saw that I was never really lost, never ever alone. God directs and redirects. God leads us to His purpose. The signs were always there.

By sharing the signs in my life, I hope you’ll be able to see the signs in yours. I might be speeding through a STOP sign—yet again!—while you’re carefully navigating a busy street, but our journeys are very similar. I think we all want to be part of a greater purpose. We all want help and guidance in our understanding of God and His plans for us. And when we miss the signs, real and divine, we want to know that God will redirect and refocus us, that He will get us back on track.

  • What signs has God placed in your life?
  • Where have you needed to YIELD in life?
  • Where have you found yourself in a CONSTRUCTION ZONE with God?
  • As I used to say to my sons, “Buckle up! We’re going for a ride!”

This has been a guest post by Deanna Nowadnick. When not responding to traffic citations, Deanna Nowadnick provides administrative support for The Planner’s Edge, an investment advisory firm in Washington State. She’s active in her church, playing the violin Sunday mornings and serving on the leadership team. She loves Bible study and delights in meetings with various women’s groups. Deanna’s a Pacific Northwest native who’s been blessed with a wonderful marriage to Kurt. This is Deanna’s second book. Her first book, Fruit of My Spirit: Reframing Life in God’s Grace is also an inspirational memoir. Deanna’s books are available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

You can connect with Deanna at deannanowadnick.com as well as on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.