To Go Another Way

This bridge, which is just inside the entrance of Utah Lake State Park, will eventually connect to a Nature Center that has long been in the master plan for the area. Potential features include boardwalks, wildlife and bird watching towers and a second story reception room overlooking the 96,900 acre lake. They’ll have facilities for on-site lake research and monitoring, plus areas for educational activities to accommodate school field trips. It is anticipated that the Nature Center will become a major hub in connecting various cities along the county trail system.

Apparently, the first thing they built was a bridge. It is strong and beautiful and safe, and by its very existence, calls you to cross it and wonder what’s on the other side. Right now, it’s the only advertising you see that hints at the possibilities of what the area will someday contain.

Recently, they have blocked off the last half of the bridge and posted a warning about the hazards of falling tree branches due to the close proximity of the aging trees and the fact that the area is not fully maintained since construction has not yet begun. It’s a small simple sign, printed and laminated on plain white paper, then attached to a section of chain link that is wired to each side of the bridge. It would be easy to dismiss something so unassuming. It contains no threats nor danger symbols nor posted consequences or impending fines for disobedience. It simply states “Nature Area Closed Due To Falling Tree Hazard”

One could ignore the warning, climb over the section of chain link, and continue to cross the bridge and no one would probably ever know…unless of course there was an injury. The sign is posted for good reason.

There is another safer way to get to the Nature Center site that doesn’t involve crossing the bridge but it’s a seldom used dirt road and the entrance is outside the park and unmarked. If you didn’t have the right directions, you might not know where to turn.

Some specific paths in life are often viewed like this bridge: purposeful, strong, and seemingly able to get us where we are heading. We might even be half way through our journey when we suddenly find ourselves warned about our current route. It is usually a simple, unassuming sign…a thought that says, ‘be kinder’….. ‘try to see their point of view’….. or perhaps even ‘let it go’ ….. or the ever important ‘respond with love’.

We can stubbornly persist to proceed the way we want, but

Hurt of some type usually follows when we ignore warnings. Click To Tweet

We might not know another way. We might even think that we’re unable to turn around and find a different course, abandoning the thought of reaching some place potentially wonderful.

Often, we are unable to see the big picture, but there is One who always sees the end from the beginning and has pleaded with us to trust Him and to “lean not unto thine own understanding.” He knows the way to peace and safety. The choice is ours on whether we will heed the warnings or not. In our world full of hazards the wisdom that Solomon taught is not only valid today, but sorely needed:

“But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil” (Proverbs 1:33)