Jesus take the wheel! When there is not enough room to turn around

Do you feel trapped, discouraged, or confused about life? Don't just go back and forth. Let God lead you forward. Photo: Spreng Ben (Flickr)

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS, Fla., June 5, 2012 — One summer, I embarked on a ten-hour road trip in my husband’s work truck. As always, I am quite a sight with three children and two dogs inside the cab, driving a truck and boat loaded down with a month’s worth of luggage, skis and other equipment needed for our ministry events.

All was going well until we stopped in Florence, South Carolina to grab a bite to eat. I pulled the truck up to a spot at the front of a local sub restaurant and headed inside with my kids. When we finished, we walked the dogs and climbed aboard for our final three hours. Everything was great until I pulled out of the parking spot and realized that there was no place to turn around. I pulled the truck forward looking for a way to circle around the building but didn’t see an exit. I put the truck in reverse and, over the course of 15 minutes, tried to get the boat backed out of a narrow driveway.

Now would be a good time to tell you that backing a trailer isn’t my God-given gift! My inability to back a trailer provided many on-lookers with free entertainment, including about 10 migrant workers who were outside the restaurant eating sandwiches. In the end, they were on their feet watching me pull forward and backwards, forward and backwards…

As you can imagine, with three kids starting to panic, a Labrador retriever licking me in the face and men laughing at me, my emotions were starting to fuel up. I started to pray and asked Jesus to “Take the Wheel!” I wish I could say I remained in a godly state, but fear and embarrassment were starting to take control.

Just when I was about to cry, I noticed out of the corner of my eye an elderly gentlemen and his wife pulled to the side, sitting in their car watching my situation. He looked harmless so I got out of the truck and answered his question, “Honey, what are you trying to do?” When I told him I was trying to get out, he responded with a wise, “Sugar, there isn’t enough room to turn this boat around in here.”

I just smiled and replied, “I know.”

I waited helplessly beside his wife as this sweet man climbed into my truck and pulled away with my kids (who were wide-eyed with fear) and my dogs (who were licking him in the face). He kept going straight until he disappeared around the corner of the building. I couldn’t believe it … there was a way out all the time. All I had to do was pull forward a few more feet and I would have seen that there was a road beside the dumpster.

As I was sharing this story the other day with a friend, I realized how this situation is so similar to how we live our lives. We go back and forth without really going anywhere. We grow angry, embarrassed, irritated over situations that really aren’t even an issue. We panic and grow anxious when all we have to do is put our lives in park, say a prayer and look for God to lead us to freedom.

Are you feeling trapped, discouraged, confused, or anxious today? Take time to sit with God, put your mind and body in park for a moment and call out to Him. Get in His Word and open your heart to be led by Him. A way out is right around the corner.

Jeremiah 33:3 (AMP) says, “Call to me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things, fenced in and hidden, which you do not know.”

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Kristi Overton-Johnson


As a professional water skier for over 20 years and the World Record Holder in women’s slalom from 1992-2010, Kristi Overton Johnson has taken to the waters of the world with passion and perseverance. Kristi began her waterskiing career at the age of 4 and turned professional at 13. For 15 years, Kristi dominated women’s slalom, accumulating 80 professional wins and capturing more number one world rankings than any other female skier in history.
Before retiring from professional sports, Kristi founded a non-profit water sports ministry In His Wakes. Since its inception, In His Wakes has touched the lives of over 10,000 at-risk youth across the nation and internationally. This unique ministry brings hope, healing and encouragement through the avenue of water sports and through the message of God's love.
For years, Kristi has travelled nationally and internationally as a faith-based motivational speaker encouraging people through her life experiences as an athlete, wife, mother and ministry leader. Kristi also ministers through song and through her gift as a writer. In Running the Course, her first book, she wrote about her experiences as a top professional athlete and how through faith she found purpose for her life. 
Although Kristi is committed to helping others achieve their God-given destinies, she realizes that her first priority is her family. Kristi has been married to best friend Tim Johnson since 1994. Tim and Kristi have three children, the youngest of which were both adopted from Russia in 2004. They reside in North Florida where they raise their family and serve their community through Kristi Overton Johnson Ministries

Contact Kristi Overton-Johnson


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