We often impose schedules on our road trips through life, mandatory departure windows and estimated times of arrival. We barrel down the highway, watching the speedometer, eager to reach our destination where the real fun will begin. Our goal is to put miles behind us, covering ground while keeping our eyes on the road ahead; but if we don’t take time to pause and consider our expectations and reasons for traveling, we may miss many important sights along the way. The following are a few reasons we should slow down and make time to for periodic stops along our journeys.

Stop to . . .

Listen to your spirit and decide which move forward is right for you.

Ask yourself if the time is right for this particular journey and what you hope to discover at the end of the road.

Calculate the cost of your new adventure and prepare all you will need to take with you on your way. 

Think about your reasons for embarking on your travels and know that your motivations remain true to your heart.

When you have decided set out on the trip you have planned, make sure to take time along the way to . . .

Look around and get your bearings before proceeding on your path.

Evaluate your progress and make any needed course corrections, right wrongs, reverse wrong turns, and reconsider your next steps.

Enjoy the breathtaking views along your route, the unbelievable beauty of the world, and the unexpected ways God provides for all our needs.

Explore your new level of understanding as you encounter new experience and grow into new wisdom.

Once you have reached your final goal and celebrated your success, remember to . . .

Pause again to recognize how far you’ve come.

Appreciate all you have gained and give thanks for the courage, spirit, and determination you found to complete your journey.

Realize that success is not in achieving a goal but in learning a lesson and sharing what you have learned with others you meet.

Nurture a relationship and know that our most important blessings are the people who travel with us throughout our lives.

Finally, stop to pray in gratitude for all the twists and turns on your road and how all have contributed to the person you have become. Be happy that your journey is unique and special to you.

I wish you many blessed discoveries on your journey!

Where are you planning to travel this summer? Where do you expect to pause along the road ahead?

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Snow fell again this week. The wind drove drifts across the driveway and formed sheets of ice across the patio. For weeks I have felt frozen in place, waiting for a gentle thawing to release me to move again. While I wait, I have considered how often feeling stuck takes over our experiences, and I have been exploring the strategies that help us escape the clutches of stuckness.

This video for a TED talk by Dr. Lani Nelson Zlupko describes a few ways we can get out of a stuck state of being and back on the road again.

Turn. Instead of focusing on the problem that keeps you in place, turn to look in the direction of your goal. Name what you want and focus on that instead of the circumstances that are holding you back.

Learn. View bumps in the road as opportunities to learn, and recognize that even large bumps can be overcome and lead to future growth.

Persist. Keep trying until you achieve your goal. With each step along the path, you will grow closer to being the person you were meant to be.

This winter I will be working to focus on the spring sun and leave the bitter cold behind. I pray your road leads you to a bright new season of growth.

How do you get out of a stuck situation? How do you turn to focus on the path that lies ahead?

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