The Yellow Brick Road


Follow the yellow brick road. When Dorothy found herself in a strange place and didn’t know how to get home, this pig-tailed girl from Kansas heeded the advice of a dubious band of Munchkins. Dorothy and her dog, Toto, met other needy misfits along the way, locked arms, and empowered themselves with the mantra, Follow the yellow brick road. Reaching the wizard was their mission, and this road would lead them there. Danger, discouragement and an evil witch confronted them along the way, but they pressed on with hopes alive. The yellow brick road ended with a bitter discovery.

The Emerald City glittered, but the landlord was a fraud.

Dorothy’s eyes opened to the truth—she’d wasted a lot of time on that road, and had led others astray as well. Why did she listen to an unreliable source and take an unproven path? Was there no other option? Ah, yes, her ruby slippers, given to her for such a purpose. She knew they were special but underestimated their usefulness.

We love this classic movie. In the end, Dorothy and her friends got what they wanted, evil was defeated, and all were reminded, “There’s no place like home.”

Ok, it’s just a fairy tale! But can you see the parallel? That bunch of broken misfits—that’s us. We wake up in a strange place trapped by our own inability to help ourselves. We know we need God, every day and in every way. Yellow brick roads beckon us to follow, and promise something grand, but they turn out to be a sham.

So, how will we find God? The only proven, time-tested road that leads to God is the Bible—that’s why He gave it to us. Many grant verbal allegiance to the Bible but underestimate its usefulness. Knowing the Bible is not our ultimate aim. The goal is to know God. He alone can bind up our wounds, make sense of our lives, and equip us to live out our calling on this earth.

When we follow the latest thing, endorsed by the masses, it may take us on an intriguing adventure. But in the end that path is a cliff with no bridge; it doesn’t get us where we want to go. Yellow brick roads waste our time and lead others on a dead-end trip, all while we’re feeling safety in numbers.

Do you want to be a godly, wise person who knows the heart of God and lives in light of His Word? You will not become this person by default. You will only become what you are in the process of becoming. This requires deliberate choices to get to know God’s Word, and to meditate on it daily, thoroughly, intentionally. You will find the highway to a closer walk with God paved with Scripture. Everything else is a yellow brick road, a costly diversion that will keep you from things that matter most.

This blog is an excerpt from my book, HIS WORD IN MY HEART, Moody Publishers 2013. I hope you like it and I’d love to hear your feedback.

6 comments to The Yellow Brick Road

  • Chérie

    So true my friend! The largest selection of “yellow bricks” are sold in Bookstores —in a section aptly titled ‘self’-help.
    SELF-help. Ya. Good luck with that?

    • Hi Cherie, I hadn’t thought about bookstores but you are so right. I would also include the music that current. Some of the lyrics are so off the path that no wonder the masses are just following blindly. We need to boldly, but gently, insert the truth whenever we can. Glad you shared your perspective with us.

  • Beverly Schlomann

    Janet,
    My most devastating “yellow brick road” has been my own heart and mind. Oh, the lies that were there! It has only been by storing God’s Word in my heart that His truth could combat the lies and put me on the right path. Janet, your encouragement to memorize the Word has been such a blessing! Thank you. . .

    • Hi Beverly, Your comment speaks to all of us. Our own hearts lead us astray time and again. The Word is so vital to put us on the right path and keep us there. Thank you for this reminder.

  • Penny

    Hello Janet….I am always encouraged by your writings; how happy I am when a new email from you pops up in my inbox! Thank you for this particular Illustration that reminds me how vital it is to stay on the right path in my faith journey……and to do that I must be in God’s Word daily. You are a blessing to me. ~ Penny

    • Penny, Thank you so much for your kind words. I am always spurred on by all of you who persevere and keep each other plodding further step by step. The journey is long and full of pot holes so we need each other.

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