Even with a satnav – a satellite navigational system – in your car you can still make a wrong turn! John Ortberg writes: “At one point [on a recent journey], I was quite sure the lady in the guidance system was wrong. She said to go left, and I didn’t go left. I went right because I knew she was wrong.

Then the lady with the irritating voice said, “Recalculating route. When safe to do so execute a U-turn… turn around if possible.”

I knew she was still wrong… so, know what I did? I unplugged her. That’s the beauty of the lady in the box – you can unplug her – but, then, would you believe it, I got completely lost and ended up driving round and round in circles! So I plugged the lady back in again, and you know what she said?

“I told you so you little idiot. You think I’m going to help you now? No way, Jose! Find your own way there yourself.”

No, she didn’t really say that. She said, “Recalculating route. Turn around if possible.”

And I want to say that’s an illustration of what God’s grace is like to us. Whenever we wander off track or we make a wrong turn – just like the satnav – God is always there, ready to forgive and set us back on the right path again. As soon as we are ready to listen, as soon as we are ready to surrender; to repent, God will say, “Recalibrating. This is the way to go. Execute a U-turn and I will guide you, and bring you home.” When we “unplug” from God we get lost, and lonely, and disorientated but God is always there, ready to welcome us back, to forgive us and restore us.

John Ortberg: The Me I Want To Be, 2010, Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, p.45