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The Tunnel

by Tim O'Hearn

On a recent trip through the mountains I had to drive through a tunnel. It was a short, straight tunnel, maybe a quarter mile in length. It was short enough that there were no lights in the tunnel, but it was long enough to get dark in there. As I approached I could see the light and trees and road at the other end, so I didnít turn on my lights. Almost half way through it got so dark I couldnít see the road directly in front of me. I turned on my headlights. It didnít help. I was far enough through that they only lit what was already lit. A moment of panic! ďI canít see the road. What do I do?Ē Of course, I did nothing and the car moved steadily into the lighter part of the tunnel and then out the other end. But I still panicked. ďWhat if the road turns and I donít? What if I drift into the other lane?Ē All I had to do, though, was keep the car going straight ahead.

Sometimes, I think, we all know that moment of panic. God has shown us the road. He even shows us the light of heaven at the end of the tunnel. But as we drive through this life, things get dark. Sin, temptation, peer pressure, lack of faith; all increase the darkness. Peter knew the feeling. It was dark, a little after midnight. He saw the light, but lost sight of it. "But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me." (Matt 14:30) He began to panic in the dark.

What can we do when this happens? The darkness surrounds us, and though we see the light we worry. Sometimes we should do what I did in that tunnelónothing. God is carrying us on a straight course home. Why not let him carry us? You know the straight path (Isa 40:3-4); it is the path of the Lord. Just keep your path straight. Instead we want to turn the wheel or hit the brakes.

ďYou are going right toward the end of the tunnel, God, but maybe Iíll turn just a little to the right.Ē If I do, I hit the wall. If I turn left Iím going to meet some people going the other way; and meet them hard.

If I hit the brakes I wonít make it through to the other side. Worse yet, I will prevent others from making it either. You see, there are people following me. Right or wrong, itís a fact. Instead of a ďDonít follow me; Iím lostĒ bumper sticker, Iím wearing one that says ďFollow me; Iím saved.Ē ("Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ." (1 Cor 11:1) If I slam on the brakes, the ones following crash into my unbelief. Neither of us gets through safely.

If you are going the way God has us pointed, if you are riding in the car that is His son, when the darkness comes and the panic hits, donít do anything! If you drive, you will just mess things up. Let him carry you in the straight way. God will carry you through.