Why Detours are a Good Thing

by | Feb 23, 2015 | Life & Faith | 9 comments

My son and his family live only 3 hours away from me in Portland (Oregon) and I often relish the drive down there for a visit.  I have time to myself, just me and Jesus and my thoughts.  (And really loud worship music. Bethel.)

When I was ready for my return trip last week I had some extra time at my disposal. Because I didn’t need to rush, I decided to veer from the well-traveled highway and offroad my way home for the last leg of my trip.

It was the best decision I made that day.  I saw the most unusual sights (the humble treehouse above) and enjoyed a view of the mountains and early budding trees.

Country stores dotted the highway, little towns with odd names appeared every 20 miles or so. The view of farms and pastures filled me with an unexplainable peace I’d never experience barreling down the freeway.

I soon found myself racing with a freight train on the outskirts of one of the little towns. We weren’t exactly ‘racing’, but traveling parallel to each other.  My speed was a bit ahead of his but I eventually was side by side with the engineer. 

I suddenly had the urge to honk my horn wildly and wave.  So silly, I thought. That’s what children do….He probably doesn’t even see me. He’s managing that amazingly huge train, tons of cargo to manage and trying to get it safely to its destination.  He’s got a big job.  How can he see me?

Then I passed him and viewed the engine car in my peripheral vision.

All of a sudden, ‘wooooo, woooo….woooo, woooo.’ The train whistle blew loud and clear.

He answered me back!  He saw me.

For an also unexplainable reason, I began to tear up.  It was the smallest thing, and yet the most touching…..he saw me!  

Lady in the red car along the backroad through the small town on her way home on a Sunday. Me?

The reason it was so powerful was the simple fact he saw me.  And he said, ‘hello.’

I thought about my Father God in Heaven, and how touched I am when I know He hears me.  How utterly overjoyed I am when He calls my name, when He notices me. 

With all those cars and all those drivers on all those freeways in this great big world.
No matter where I am, God sees and hears me.

And He answers back. 


  1. oh, Julie….that sounds hard. Thanks for reading. May God bring you His sweet companionship and presence.

  2. Oh, yes–God sees, and every so often provides a clear reminder of his constant presence and watchful care. Loved this story, Jody. Your words perfectly captured your heart response to a sweet. simple, and yet profound moment!

  3. What an amazing tree house – I want to go to there! And, to be seen. That is a gift. Thanks for sharing this special moment, Jody 🙂

  4. Thank you for reminding me I am seen and loved. I spend most of my work day by myself in the large lobby as I am a receptionist. I get oh so lonely and isolated. This post reminds me I am never as alone as I think I am. Thank you, Julie

  5. I love Bethel worship music too. Glad you took the detour. Sometimes we find the most delightful things there!

  6. Trying to figure out where the current detour is leading–back to the main road or to a new one altogether?

  7. I love this. What a joy to be really seen and really known.


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