It’s the third week of January, and already some one has gotten in my lane. I was driving to Target excited about catching some deals, when out of nowhere the car next to me veers into my lane. My sudden response was to jerk my car into the lane next to me, but there was a another car there. Panicked, I hit my brakes and laid on my horn. The person finally figured out what they had done wrong and quickly course corrected their car. The first thing that came out of my mouth was “Stay In Your Lane!”
But in order to stay in your lane, you must first scout out your lane. You have to know what your lane is before you can stay in it. Figuratively, your lane is where you have unique gifting and talents that come naturally. Your lane is your True North. It’s the place where your natural abilities thrive. Your lane is just for you. Yes, others may have knowledge and experience in the same lane, but oftentimes no one sees your lane quite the way you see it. Take me for example, it is natural for me to communicate privately and publicly. Whether I am speaking to you one-on-one, or speaking in a banquet hall of 200 people, it’s just natural because I love to talk. That’s what I mean by staying in your lane.
But now, let’s look at an area where I am not comfortable – technology. For example, I see people posting pictures with words overlaid on Facebook. I don’t know how to do that, and if you see it on my page, you know that someone did it for me. Don’t get me wrong, basic tech stuff I get. But, going any further than the basics, I’m in unfamiliar territory. So take the time to scout out your lane.
Now, the next area is where this discussion began, steer clear out of other people’s lane. Traveling in someone else’s lane can be dangerous and oftentimes causes a collision. Here’s what I mean, we all give advice, solicited or unsolicited. We provide advice on topics that we know about and some topics we don’t, but we always have an opinion. It’s fine to provide an opinion, if asked. It’s even better, if you have prior knowledge or experience yourself. The problem occurs when you try to advise someone of something you think you know about, when actually it’s just your opinion. For example, I would never advise someone on what they should do if they are going through a divorce. I’ve never been divorced, so what do I know about that? However, I can’t tell you how many people that I hear giving advice on areas that they have no frame of reference. That’s what I mean by steering clear out of other people’s lane. God has somebody out there that has been through that struggle and has practical advice that can help them through it. It doesn’t have to be you.
Lastly, make sure you safeguard your lane. Far too many times, associates, friends, family and etc think they know what’s best for you. So they will make suggestions on how you should do things and basically drag you into their lane or the lane they think you should be in. Safeguard your lane by staying true to your lane. Don’t let others, no matter their best intention to help you, cause you to step out of your lane to join them in theirs. You can’t mimic skills or expertise that you don’t have. God has given us all great abilities, but He did not give us the same abilities in the same degree or form. Don’t get caught up on doing things because someone else is good at it. Know your lane and safeguard it.