The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord,
And He [God] delights in his way.
I have been thinking lately about how the Lord plans our lives and our steps. He says so right here in His Word. Listen to how The Message Bible says it, “Stalwart [man] walks in step with God; his path blazed by God, he’s happy. If he stumbles, he’s not down for long; God has a grip on his hand.” How totally awesome is that! Webster’s defines the word stalwart as “marked by outstanding strength and vigor of body, mind or spirit.” So, do the plans God has for us manifest in spite of our own response? Think about this …can two people accomplish a common goal if they are walking in opposite directions? No, it’s impossible. Suppose someone very reliable says to you, “Walk with me to the bank and I’ll make a withdrawal and give you a large sum of money?” How foolish it would be for you to turn and walk in the other direction. And yet, how many times do we as Christians willfully plan our own way without even consulting our Heavenly Father? And how many heartaches and setbacks has it caused us in our quest for happiness?
How wonderful it would be if we could consistently walk in step with Him by following the leading of the Holy Spirit. And how can we accomplish that? You cannot recognize a person’s voice unless you have spent time with him, listening to him, memorizing his inflections and intonations. So it is with hearing the voice of God and following His leading. As we spend time with Him, learning to hear His voice and walk in cadence with His steps, our path to happiness and fulfillment is blazed before us. He takes the sword of His Word and cuts a path through the jungle of worry, fear and unrest that try to block us from the path of success that He has specifically laid out for us.
As for myself, I know one thing, or should I say two things, that have caused me to break cadence and stray into enemy territory. They are the culprits of impatience and self-will. “God, it is taking you entirely too long. I’ll just handle this one myself.” We wouldn’t dare say those words, but how many times have we thoughtlessly acted them out? I have many a battle scar incurred along this pathway of disobedience. But thank God for His mercy and grace. We can find our way back onto His pathway of peace at any time by repentance…simply changing our mind and falling into step with Him once again. If we really believe that God has planned our way, there will be no place in our lives for worry or trepidation. As we rest in Him, we know that whatever comes our way has to come through His hand and He will either lead us out or lead us through.
“Holy Father, as I walk in step with You;
I thank you that my path is blazed by You and I’m happy.
If I stumble, I’m not down for long;
For You, Father, have a grip on my hand.”