News From Terre Haute, Indiana


April 25, 2014

The Joy Lady: Finding my way back home; finding the right map

TERRE HAUTE — I’m one of “those” people. I find it difficult to follow directions. I find reading maps to be a most difficult skill. I get lost. A lot.

In short, I am “geographically challenged.” I don’t know my east from my west or my north from my south. If I’m looking at a map, I have to hold it so that the top of the map is headed in the same direction I’m headed. If I’m headed south, the map is upside down, and if I turn east, the map makes its own eastward bend. Otherwise, I will lose my way and end up in Illinois, when I should be arriving in Ohio. I just can’t seem to find my way.

This is my father’s fault. When I was growing up in Terre Haute, he told me that the Wabash River was west, Chicago was north, Indianapolis was east, and Evansville was south. Always. So within that little area, I’m great. But take me out of that geographical rectangle, and I can’t find my way. Now that I live in Madison County, Indianapolis is south, the Wabash River is north, Terre Haute is west, Evansville is just as far west as it is south, and I have no idea where Chicago is.

About a year ago, a woman was giving me directions to her church. She started out with, “Oh, don’t worry. It’s easy to find.” I warned her that might be true for most people, but not for me. She proceeded to give me precise directions, which I then taped to the middle of my steering wheel.

After only two wrong turns, I walked into the church with 20 minutes to spare. She and three other women were sitting in a circle of folding chairs set up in a corner of the room. She rose to greet me, telling the other women, “It’s OK, we can stop praying now. Verna has found her way.” Now, there’s a woman whose directions can be trusted.

Isn’t that the way of it? We spend a lot of our time going through life trying to find our way. What is God’s will for us? Which path does He want me to take? What if we end up in one place when we are supposed to be in another? So we search the Scriptures for directions for our life, yet we still manage to take a few wrong turns here and there.

John 14:5-6 records a conversation between Jesus and Thomas. “Thomas said to him, ‘Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?’ Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’”

And there you have it. The way to find your way is to follow in Jesus’ way. No matter where you are, He gives directions that can be trusted. Always. No matter where Chicago is.

Verna Davis, speaker and writer, may be reached at


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