When you walk Chicago’s lakefront trail you’re always dodging things. Bikers, beachgoers, volleyballs, dog-walkers, neighborhood picnics — it’s an obstacle course. There’s no danger to it, but you keep your eyes open.
That’s why, late last summer, two runners caught our attention. They were tied together at the wrists. The path was packed. There were kids darting about, bikes weaving in and out, dogs straining at leashes, and clusters of young people spread across the width of the trail. We couldn’t figure the advantage of being tied together.
One glanced this way and that, and seemed to be doing all the talking. The other gazed straight ahead, saying nothing. They kept a good pace, weaving in harmony, eighteen inches apart. Then, as if rehearsed, they slowed to a stop just off the trail for a quick drink from their water bottles.
As we approached, we heard them discussing what was ahead. A sharp turn, the cinder trail merging with an asphalt bike path, bikes on the left, runners on the right, and so forth. And then it made sense. One was blind, the other gently leading with the string and narrative. As they set off again, they swung around us to avoid a young couple pushing a stroller, then ran through the grass at the fork to avoid two bicyclists walking their bikes.
No one likes being told what to do or where to turn. Back seat driver is not high praise. Yet, when we’re late and lost, we appreciate Siri telling us the way. In the biblical book of Galatians, the author writes, “Let the Holy Spirit guide your lives.” Why? Because we can’t see what’s coming. Only God knows that, which makes His guidance a good thing to have. Especially with strings attached.