Michel: Roundabouts are nothing to fear

Published 12:01 am Saturday, April 21, 2018

I do not like roundabouts. Traffic circles designed to allow cars to move continuously may work for everyone else, but they confuse me.

As I drove toward one in Abita Springs, I told my daughter Elise, “I get so nervous on these things!”

“We’re the only people on the road!” Elise said quickly. And loudly.

It didn’t matter. I always worry that I’m not in the correct lane or that I won’t know when to leave the circle. Roundabouts require you to know when to yield, when to go and, above all, you must know where you are going.

While I’m often surprised by the places I see roundabouts, I was shocked to find the word in the New Living Translation of the Bible. In the account of God leading the Israelites from their slavery in Egypt to the Promised Land is Exodus 13:17. “So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea.”

What should have been an 11-day trek became a 40-year journey as they followed God through the desert.

On this course, they watched the Red Sea part, drank water that came from a rock and were nourished by a steady supply of manna from Heaven.

They learned many things on their roundabout way.

Because I believe that God directs my daily steps, I’m going to stop dreading roundabouts, whether they’re on the road or part of my personal journey.

If God leads me to a place I’d rather skip, I’m going to trust Him to strengthen me for the struggle. I’m going to ask Him to open my heart so that I can take in the lessons I would have learned in no other place.

And when the work is done, I know that He will show me the next part of my path.

Ronny Michel may be reached at rmichel@rtconline.com.