Counting the trip that the girls and I just got back from I’ve been down the New River Gorge 5 out of the last 6 years. We put in at the same spot. We get out at the same spot. It’s safe to say I’ve become rather familiar with that section of the river.
So what’s the use in having or listening to a river guide?
Because it’s different every time! The huge boulders don’t move. The shoreline doesn’t move. The trees don’t move. But… every time the water level changes, the river changes.
Rapids are created by water moving over large stones in the river. When the water level rises those same rocks disappear below the surface and other rapids are created. The same thing happens when the water level drops.
Since the level changes nearly every day the river is somewhat different every day. While I might be familiar with the river in general, I don’t have the expertise to read the river and be aware of all the possible dangers because of the constantly changing conditions.
That’s why a trained guide is indispensable!
The same is true of life. One day or one situation can look just like another giving us that sense of… “been there, done that.” But little variables can radically change what looks like familiar territory. That’s why we desperately need to rely on the Holy Spirit!
“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.” ~ John 16:12-13a
Jesus and the Father knew that we would need help navigating the constantly changing currents of life. No two situations are exactly alike. It can be hard to always know the right thing to do. That’s one of the reasons we receive the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.