Why you going this way?

  • By BECKY CORSON
  • Sunday, January 14, 2018 7:50am
  • Neighbors

While driving our son to school the other day my husband asked me “Why are you going this way?” No matter the time of day, amount of traffic, or road conditions, my husband takes the same routes to get places. He drives the same route to bring our sons to school, same route to church, same to work. I try not to let it bug me, but sometimes it just does.

It’s kind of like a faith journey. The time we spend from the day we are born until the day we die is a journey. We don’t get to control all the circumstances that define our personal existence, but there is generally plenty of time in the days, weeks, months, and years to fill with thoughts and actions of our own choosing. Some people don’t really think about life as a faith journey, but I do. I can’t help it. It began being born and raised Lutheran, when I was offered these “saved by grace lenses” from which to see the world. In my case, I accepted the offer and kept the lenses, and since those humble beginnings I have bumped into, collided with, and side-swiped lots of other people on their own faith journeys. Sometimes the way other folks are headed bugs me (like the guy who told me there was no higher power that had anything to do with his existence; I told him I’d pray for him). Even my own path can get on my nerves. On the flip side of that, there are many more times when I’ve been invited to join other people on their journeys, or invited someone to join me on mine; when we’ve met at a crossroads, or in a resting place, and just decided to walk together or hang out for awhile.

One thing I take away from all of these encounters is there is no one right direction for a faith journey. It’s true that on these journeys we often make horrible choices. Painful, awful choices. But God loves us no matter where the journey takes us. He is patient and loving, softening our hearts with the Holy Spirit and waiting for us to “figure it out.” This is what makes God’s unconditional love for us such a gift. He’s even working in the heart of that guy who told me there was no “higher power.” We can ask questions and learn new things and try on another person’s “lenses,” and be loved right through it all. God can handle our doubts and our curiosities; our imaginations, and our wanderings. God’s love is like Thunder Mountain when I’m out for a walk on the trails around Dredge Lake. There are so many ways to go, but as long as I can see Thunder Mountain, I’m not lost.

By the way, when my husband asked me “Why are you going this way,” I answered “because it’s easier to take a left at the stop light this time of day.” He nodded in understanding, but it’s a safe bet in the future he will drive the way he always does. Even two life-long Lutherans in the same family can be on a different path. As long as there is plenty of love, I’ll try not to let it bug me.


• Becky Corson is a member of Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church. “Living & Growing” is a reccurring column written by different authors and submitted by local clergy and spiritual leaders.


More in Neighbors

Fred LaPlante is the pastor at the Juneau Church of the Nazarene. (Photo courtesy of Fred LaPlante)
Living and Growing: Be a blessing

Years ago, I learned a great acronym, B.L.E.S.S. “B” stands for “Begin… Continue reading

Salad ingredients ready to assemble. (Photo by Patty Schied)
Cooking for Pleasure: Mexican corn and bean salad

Several years ago, I ate at a wonderful Mexican restaurant in Los… Continue reading

The interior of the Pipeline Skate Park on Dec. 7, 2023. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Neighbors briefs

Join interactive design meeting for Jackie Renninger Park on May 21 CBJ… Continue reading

A new online dictionary features Lingít, X̱aad Kíl, Shm’algyack and English. (Mircea Brown / Courtesy of Sealaska Heritage Institute)
Neighbors: Sealaska Heritage Institute debuts multilingual online Alaska Native dictionary with audio

Platform includes resources for Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian languages.

Brent Merten is the pastor of Christ Lutheran Church in Juneau, a member of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. (Photo courtesy of Brent Merten)
Living and Growing: Your room is waiting

Thursday, May 9, is a very special day. Although most calendars don’t… Continue reading

(Juneau Empire file photo)
Living and Growing: Twisting Scripture to suit themselves

Ever wonder why so many different people say so many different things… Continue reading

The Ward Lake Recreation Area in the Tongass National Forest. (U.S. Forest Service photo)
Neighbors: Public input sought as Tongass begins revising 25-year-old forest plan

Initial phase focuses on listening, informing, and gathering feedback.

Sister Sadria Akina, Elder Tanner Christensen and Elder Bronson Forsberg, all missionaries with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, collect litter on April 22, 2023, in the Lemon Creek area. It was their first time partaking in Juneau’s communitywide cleanup. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire file photo)
Neighbors briefs

Annual Litter Free citywide cleanup on Saturday Saturday is set for Litter… Continue reading

Tortilla beef casserole ready to serve. (Photo by Patty Schied)
Cooking for Pleasure: Tortilla beef casserole for Cinco de Maya

When my kids were growing up their appetites were insatiable. Every night… Continue reading

An aging outhouse on the pier extending out from the fire station that’s purportedly the only public toilet in Tenakee Springs in August of 2022. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Gimme a Smile: Is it artificial intelligence or just automatic?

Our nation is obsessed with AI these days. Artificial intelligence is writing… Continue reading

Adam Bauer of the Local Spiritual Assembly of Bahá’ís of Juneau.
Living and Growing: Embracing progress while honoring Our roots

I would like to take a moment to acknowledge that we are… Continue reading

Maj. Gina Halverson is co-leader of The Salvation Army Juneau Corps. (Robert DeBerry/The Salvation Army)
Living and Growing: “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

Ever have to say goodbye unexpectedly? A car accident, a drug overdose,… Continue reading