Just like God

Proverbs 3:6

…in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

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My husband and I enjoy hiking.  On Saturday mornings when I don’t go into work, we drive to Piestewa Park and hike on one of the many scenic routes that Arizona has to offer.  On a recent, non-working, Saturday, I attempted to wake up my college age daughter to go with us.  She was very comfortable in her bed so it was just my husband and me.  My daughter’s parting words to me…”don’t be a whiner baby.”  In other words, enjoy yourself and stop complaining about the climb. All throughout the hike my daughter’s words echoed in my brain.  I maintained a positive attitude and also did not whine.  Yes, I had to stop and catch my breath or allow my legs a small reprieve, but I did not whine.  While on the most challenging portion of the hike, I noticed something.  My husband would lead the way and encourage me to follow him.  He was able to navigate the easier ways to climb, with the more sturdy footholds and less chance to slide or fall.  Not once did he complain or use disparaging words to try to “motivate” me. He was just there with his hand out to me in assistance when the climb was steep.  If he heard rocks begin to slip underneath me his hand would extend and he would grab me.  When we reached the peak of our climb, we stopped for an extended water and rest break.  Looking around at God’s Creation, I realized all the physical exertion and shortness of breath had been worth it.  We had persevered and eventually conquered.  It was an amazing feeling.  I even heard the Rocky victory theme in my head.

That’s when it dawned on me. It is this way with God. He choses which path He has for us.  He attempts to lead us down the path He has for us and what do we do, we complain. We whine when it gets difficult and perhaps we even fight Him every step of the way.  He is there with His hand outstretched waiting for us to take ahold of it so He can guide and direct us.  He keeps us on the sturdy path, we often choose the path that looks easier but may be misleading.  Our own paths are created by sinners. God’s path is created from perfection. On our road the dirt and rocks we tread upon are built from our own desires and we are a selfish people. We do not see what lies ahead.  Although God’s path may be rock filled, we may slip, we may fall, He is there with us. He sees what’s ahead. He consistently reaches out His Hand and will catch us when we fall and guide us through the steep climbs and narrow passageways.

Where is He directing you?  What path has He laid out before you?  Are you going down your own path or His?  It may be time for you to change directions and allow God to lead.  His ways may not be our own, however, the best place for you to be is in the Will of God! Stop complaining and enjoy the view!IMG_0899[1]

Focusing on the Smaller Picture

The longer I am a Christian and the longer I allow God to take control, the more I am convinced that He has an amazing sense of humor.  I believe He thoroughly enjoys talking to us when we least expect it. I remember not too long ago actually getting up the energy to get down on my hands and knees to scrub my floor.  So you can get a complete picture, I’m on my hands and knees with a scrub brush, I’m wearing kneepads and I’m singing several choruses of the Cinderella song.  You know the one, “Cinderelly, Cinderelly all I hear is Cinderelly.”  Anyway, so with sweat trickling from my brow and my fingers all pruny-looking from the water, this is when God chooses to speak to me.  I’m thinking about entire floor I have to scrub and I’m not very happy.  Well, God says to me: “look at the small square of tile in front of you, don’t think about the entire floor.”

That’s when it hits me.  WHAM, right upside the head:

Matthew 6:34 says “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

As Christians we have assurance from the One and Only God that He has a plan for us.  There is a reason He put us here on His earth and why He keeps us here.  However, even firm assurance from God the Almighty, doesn’t keep us from questioning, seeking and desiring the foreknowledge that He has.  We want to see what lies ahead.  But you know what, I don’t know if I’d want to see what lies ahead of me before it’s time.  What lies ahead might be the deepest, darkest, longest, most treacherous trial of my entire life.  Now, if I saw that in my future would I still eagerly walk down the path, that God has chosen for me, if I knew that it was going to lead me there?  God tells us in His Word that we will have trials, we will have pain.  As Christians we will be persecuted for our faith.  Some Christians today are being persecuted, tortured, and even martyred for their faith.  However, we have assurance from God that He knows what lies ahead, He has been there, and will be there with us.

Deuteronomy 31:8 “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you;’ he will never leave you nor forsake you.  Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” 

What a statement of unconditional love from the Father! No matter what happens in this life, we have His promise that He has seen what lies ahead and He will be there with us.  We need to stop relying on ourselves and surrender to Him.

Don’t obsess about the past (He has seen you through it); stop worrying about tomorrow (He is already there); surrender today to Him (He is here with you now).