Joanna Connects: The Gospel and The GPS


“And you know the way to the place where I am going.” “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” “I am the way…” (John 14:4-5)

Thomas needs a GPS. My own sense of direction is, to put it mildly, non-existent. Once I got lost going home from work—and that was after having lived and worked at the same places for over a year. My excuse was that I tried a new route, but I cannot deny that I am geographically challenged.


A GPS is a wonderful invention for the geographically challenged. You punch in your destination and the lighted screen shows you how to get there. It’s a funny feeling when I don’t know where I am going, but I know how to get there. But that’s what the GPS does; it doesn’t care what my destination is, exactly, it just cares how to get me there. That’s the strange thing about using a GPS. It knows the way, but it does not know the place where I am going. In that way, the GPS is blind; the place is simply “your destination.” But the GPS isn’t always right. Once, I ended up in a residential development when I punched in the exact coordinates for the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. And there have been too many times when I heard “Make a -Turn,” or “Re-calculating” and am STILL lost. If I get lost so easily in my physical life, when I have eyes and ears and, hopefully, a brain, to help me figure things out, what happens in my spiritual life? Sometimes I get lost, and I need something like a spiritual GPS—but more accurate than my physical one! —to lead me to that final, welcoming message: “YOU HAVE ARRIVED AT YOUR DESTINATION.”

Sometimes the GPS isn’t always right.


The direction to our spiritual destination is, thankfully, much more reassuring, and unwavering right. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is our Spiritual Positioning System (SPS). In the Gospel, I hear Jesus telling me both the destination and the way. God is our destination, Jesus the way to get there. Like a GPS, Jesus even allows stops on the way. But he never leads us astray. In fact, Jesus leads us unwaveringly to union with God, our final destination and our true Home. Jesus is our GPS for all of us spiritually challenged. When I occasionally get lost going Home, I look at Jesus through the lighted screen of the Gospels and let him remind me how to get there. He never fails to bring me to that place.


- Joanna+


I would love to hear your reactions and thoughts! Please respond at clergy@st-barnabas.org and let’s have a conversation!