Friday, March 9, 2012

Sittin' On A Moss Covered Stump

Have you ever been hiking? I am a lover of the mountains, and love to go hiking in their splendor and majesty. I always feel closer to God when I am out in His creation. Sometimes, you will be hiking and come across a split in the trail; you have two, sometimes three routes that you can take. You are unsure which way to go, they all look good, but you have no idea where each one leads. You know you need to make a decision because darkness is starting to set in, the sun is beginning to make its descent behind the hills, and soon, you will not be able to see which way to go. You will be stuck at this crossroads, stuck on this tree stump growing moss. So, what do you do?
My husband and I are currently hiking on a spiritual mountain trail. We are faced with some very tough decisions, and we have been seeking and praying for God’s will, for the way that He wants us to go. We are standing before many trails, if we take this one it will lead us….if we take that one it will lead us….(we say to one another and reason with each other). We are at a standstill. And, we are not getting specific direction from our God. Oh, what shall we do? The night is beginning to fall.
This morning, as I was praying and asking the Lord to speak to my heart, to give us a direction, a scripture verse came into my mind. Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” That is very true; His word directs my feet and gives light to my path. “But Lord,” I respond, “We are not getting this lamp and light right now; we are stuck and need you to tell us which way to go.” Silence, nothing, nada, not a word; then, as I pondered on His word, He responds, “We walk by faith and not by sight. As I led the Israelites, so shall I lead you.”
Remember back to Exodus, when Moses and the Israelites left Egypt? The Lord led them as a cloud by day and a fire by night. He was with them every step of the way. He told them that they were to leave Egypt and to follow Him to the place which He has promised their fathers. (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, etc) Did He tell them exactly where it was they were going? Eventually, but not at first, it was the same with Abraham. The Lord told Abraham to leave and follow Him to the place that He would show him, not the place that He described; laid out, planned out, but the place that He would “show” him. So how does this help Brett and me to choose the right path? Good question!
We all have choices and paths before us, we are all travelers on our own trails, we all have decisions to make that will affect our lives and the lives of those we love. Being faced with many options, having many directions you could go, and waiting for the Lord to tell you which one to take, isn’t always going to happen. Sometimes, He is waiting for us to step out in faith, to take that first step. Do we believe that He has our good always in His plans? Do we believe that He will never leave us nor forsake us? Do we believe that He has all our days planned and that He is in total control? Yes, we believe. Then we need to take that first step and do.
Sitting at the edge of these trails, waiting for something to happen is only going to wear us down, tire us out and bring us to the point of discouragement and doubt. If we step out in faith on what we believe is the right way, then the Lord will light our path and make His lamp shine on every step. Psalm 37:23-25 tells us, “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD, And He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the LORD upholds him with His hand. I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread.”
When we are faced with this many choices, we have to take a step of faith and believe that no matter what direction we take, the Lord will be with us- as a cloud by day and a fire by night. But He is leaving the choice up to us. He is waiting for us to make that step of faith and say, “No matter what direction I go, Lord You will be with me. If I choose the wrong path, You will uphold me with Your hand. You will not forsake me, nor leave me or my family begging for bread.” Sometimes, we just got to go ahead and walk.
After reading my own words, I see now that Brett and I are fighting the walk of Faith. We are not struggling with decisions, with which way to go- but we are struggling with walking in faith. Learning to let go of what we know and walk into the unknown is very scary, but we have a God that is with us every step of the way. He may not be telling us exactly what or where to go, but He is telling us to take a step of Faith and Let Go! Yikes! Sooner or later we will have to get up from our resting spot and choose a trail, otherwise we will begin to grow moss and become stagnant. We are “waiting for the Lord to move” we tell ourselves. He is moving- behind you, trying to get you up and off that stump of disbelief that we have become so comfortable in. We walk by faith and not by sight- the lamp and light moves ahead as our feet move ahead- one step at a time.
I keep going back to what the Lord was telling me the other day, “Stop trying to figure out what I am doing.” I thought I had, but my heart was revealed to me today that we are still trying to figure out what the Lord is doing.  If you are like Brett and I right now, faced with many decisions, many different ways you can go, may I encourage you today to get off your stump and choose one. Step out in faith, when we do the Lord will then say, “This is the way, walk ye in it.” He is waiting for us to move so that He can too. He will not fail you, He will not leave you, He will walk before you, beside you, behind you and through you- but you have to move. Hebrews 11:6 says, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
We are all walking on this earthly mountain, and we are faced with choices every day. Eventually we will have to make a choice and step out in faith. Eventually we will have to “take up our bed, and walk”. If we believe God is who He says He is, and that He will take care of us, that He can make all things work together for good, (Romans 8:28) then why are we not walking? Let us all make a choice today of which trail to take, and rejoice as the Lord lights our way. Amen.