Sometimes spiritual lessons come from the most unexpected places.
I’ve been using the navigation app Waze for a couple of years now. If you’re not familiar with Waze, it’s “the world’s largest community-based traffic and navigation app,” according to its website.
The more I use Waze, the more I see the many spiritual and recovery lessons embedded in the way it works and how I choose—or don’t choose—to take its advice.
Here are 5 lessons I’ve learned from Waze:
You must be in motion to receive the next direction
Have you ever felt stuck, wishing you knew the exact right answer, or the exact right action you should take next? You may be frozen in place, or too afraid to make your next move until you know that whatever action you take will be the exact right move, leading you to the perfect outcome.
Being in motion exponentially increases your chances of getting to your destination, even when you don’t know every twist, turn, or stop. Waze, just like spiritual guidance and intuition, will tell you the next move to take, but you won’t get instructions about what to do after that until you’re in motion, in the arena, and headed toward your ultimate destination.
Make a move, especially if it’s not perfect. Life is messy.
It usually pays to do what experts tell you to do
Because I’ve lived in Houston for my entire life, I often think I know the right way to get somewhere. When Waze tells me how to get somewhere I’ve already been, I sometimes decide I know best. Why wouldn’t I?
When I decide to do it my way and ignore Waze’s instructions, I usually regret it. Inevitably I run into a traffic jam or a new road construction project that I could have completely avoided if I had taken the advice of the expert.
You don’t know what you don’t know. It is always wise to seek advice and counsel.
There is always more to learn
On more than one occasion, Waze has sent me on a route that took me to streets and places I had never been. In fact, one time it routed me through an area less than a mile from where I’ve lived for nearly 20 years that I had no idea existed.
We have two eyes, two ears, and one mouth. Listen and observe more, talk less—there is always more to see, hear, and learn.
You don’t always have to know exactly where you’re going to reach your destination
Waze won’t get you anywhere if you don’t know where you’re going, but you don’t need to know the exact location. You can type in a name or place, and it knows exactly how to get you there.
Don’t worry too much about having the exact right answer. A general idea is an excellent starting point.
Not having all the answers can be a relief—even fun!
Sometimes, even when I’m going somewhere I’ve been dozens of times before, I ask Waze to take me there according to its technological wizardry. Often, it takes me on a route I would have never taken. I get to experience new sights, the joy of letting Waze take the lead, and I often get to my destination quicker.
Let go. And let God.
You cannot change your destination overnight,
but you can change your direction overnight.
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© Vicki Tidwell Palmer, LCSW (2018)
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Love this! Such clever analogies and all so true.
Vicki Tidwell Palmer says
I got a kick out of your insights about Waze because you are absolutely spot on and these are perfect lessons for me. I can really relate. Often times I try to create my own routing map and I need to delete it! I really appreciate your blog, it is just the “direction” and encouragement I need.
Vicki Tidwell Palmer says