1 Kings 19:3-9, Psalm 16:6, Jeremiah 23:24, Psalm 139:7

Cleland Thom on location, location, location.

Cleland Thom
Cleland Thom

When God takes charge of your schedule, get ready to visit some unlikely places.

He sovereignly arranges each location, which shows that His ways aren't like ours!

Paul ended up in a brutal and revolting Roman jail. Daniel spent the night in a lions' den. Joseph's journey went from pit, to palace, to prison.

And Jeremiah ended up in an underground mud bath.

Then there was Philip. An angel dispatched him into the desert to deliver a mini-Alpha course to an Ethiopian. And when he was finished, the Holy Spirit jet-packed him into a Philistine stronghold. Cool, huh?

If you walk obediently with Jesus, He will always put you in the right location, even if it doesn't seem like it at the time. God promises us in Psalm 16:6, "The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places."

He may eventually move you somewhere else. But I've found that He usually changes me before He changes my postcode.

Sometimes, though, we end up in the wrong place. We do a runner.

We're not the first ones. Adam and Eve should have been doing the gardening, but ended up hiding among the trees.

Jonah should have been in Nineveh but finished up in a whale.

Elijah was so scared after a 'prophetic workshop' on Mount Carmel that he ran 18 miles and hid in a cave. He was the right man in the wrong place. But then God showed up and asked, pointedly, "What are you doing here?"

Running from God is pointless. He doesn't need a GPS tracker to find you. He knows where you're going before you leave. And He arrives before you do.

That's why he reminds us in Jeremiah 23:24, "Who can hide in secret places so that I cannot see them? Do not I fill heaven and earth?"

And that's why David groaned in Psalm 139, "Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?"

David knew that running away was futile. God loved him so much, He enclosed him in a divine playpen.

Now, Elijah, Jonah and Adam and Eve had valid reasons for running away. They'd messed up, dodged their responsibilities or got scared, the same as we do. But we can learn from their mistakes.

If you're struggling, then run towards God, not away from Him, as He'll catch you in the end.

Where are you today? In the right place, even if it's unexpected and feels uncomfortable? He'll enable you to cope. And it won't last for ever.

Or is God saying, "What are you doing here?"

If He is, that's good. He wants to help you to move back to where you should be. CR

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.