Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost

Not All Those Who Wander Are LostI want to confess to you I don’t have it all figured out. I feel a lot better after saying that!

I feel ok saying that because I realize that I’m learning more everyday as I go through life.

In my last post I posed this question; Is destiny defined by us or discovered?  The more I think about it I think destiny is a discovery, and what a fun discovery it can be. Jon made the comment on my blog “we don’t know what spark will ignite until we position ourselves in the places where we do the work.”

What do you do when you don’t know how to find it? What do you do when you don’t have any clue why you are here? You work until something sparks.  

I began to think about one of my favorite Biblical Characters; Abraham. Abraham is characterized as the father of faith. God gave Abraham several unique promises and one was God was going to give him a great piece of real estate. One day God comes to Abraham and tells him it is finally time for him to go get his land. He tells him to leave his extended family, his country, his home, everything he has ever known and go get what was destined for him.

One verse says that has always spoke volumes to me says, “by faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.”

Wait a minute! God left out one very important detail. He did not tell Abraham where the land was! God told Abraham to go, but didn’t tell him where to go. God didn’t give Abraham a map or directions, just go, and by faith he went.

Sometimes in life it takes more faith to wander than it does to have it all figured it out [tweet this]. In The Lord of The Rings, Tolkien wrote, “not all those who wander are lost.” What does that mean? Lost is meandering. Lost is living without meaning. A wanderer is someone who knows that there is a destiny for them, but at the same time unsure of where it is.  A wanderer is someone doing the work knowing that eventually something will spark.

I believe every person has a unique destiny that they can fulfill. Rebecca Fraser-Thill shared with me this quote from Benjamin Mays “every man and woman is born into the world to do something unique and something distinctive and if he or she does not do it, it will never be done.”

Abraham was not lost because he knew internally that there was something or some place waiting for him. Someone who is lost is lost because they do not believe and have faith that they have what Mays calls “something unique and distinctive.” A wanderer is someone moving in a direction. To be lost is not to move. Abraham kept moving.

Sometimes in life it can feel like walking in the dark, but the important thing is to keep going. Abraham knew something was waiting on him, but he didn’t know where it was. There may be something waiting on you and you don’t know where it is either, but keep walking, trying, moving, going, and wandering.

Enjoy the journey. Go on a discovery.

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  • Rebecca Fraser-Thill

    None of us have it ALL figured out! I wrote a post about this a while back ( and it is freeing to embrace this. Faith to wander is indeed difficult, but so empowering, as well. I am not religious, but I have great faith in God and that faith does make this thing we call life feel more like an adventure than a fear-filled journey. As my mom always says, “Just listen for the still, small voice of God and you’ll know which way to go.” Sometimes you don’t hear it until the last minute, but it’s there, as you say, and trusting that has been highly powerful for me.

    Thank you for mentioning me when sharing the Mays quote. Glad it resonated with you – and I like how you used it to explain feeling lost.

    • Luke Roland

      I read that post and loved the quote from Yeats. Learning and growing is definitely one of the keys to contentment and happiness. Maybe one day I will vacation at having it all figured out, but until then I will keep wandering :)! Your mom had some great advice.

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  • Carrie parker

    I can totally relate!!!

    • Luke Roland

      Hi Carrie, thank you for reading. I’m glad it related to you!

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