a light for our path.

a light for our path.

When I was a young adult, I had no problem stepping up and jumping in when I saw an injustice.

I remember boycotting General Mills and other brands who donated to pro-choice organizations. I remember going to a pro-life rally 70 miles from my home.

But it wasn’t only big causes. Plenty of times I found myself protecting anyone who I thought was being treated unkind or unjustly. This included someone I knew and someone I did not know.

And sometimes, I had to swallow hard, because I couldn’t protect the kids who were being yelled at by their mother in the store.

Growing up, for various reasons, I was not able to cultivate my strengths of leadership, perseverance, and productivity.  I was not confident whatsoever and typically deferred and trusted what others thought. I retreated, content to be quiet and do what I was told.

Throughout the years, I have been allowed to mature in what had been dormant; who I was and how I was wired. Not with be-true-to-yourself memes or singing Everybody is a Star. with Sly and the Family Stone.

But finding worthiness in the strengths I had through knowing what God thought about me.  When life threw some serious curve balls, and I said, “this is how you love me God?” – I still knew I had to trust him.  Just like the disciples  who once said, where else could I go?  You have the words of eternal life.

We all grow and mature apart from God. But will we allow sanctification? It is a process one has to want. Our strength can be our weakness. Books and such are great tools, but God’s ways are not our ways. He uses life to not just tweak our strengths but clean them up and make them solid.

While this sanctification process is occurring (which ebbs and flows throughout life; some seasons more challenging than others), it’s the loving hand of God our father who is guiding us.

Just like a child who wants his/her own way, a loving parent will set up the boundaries.

Why? Because of love. Because of protection. Because it is ultimately for the child’s good.

The Bible is not a list of do’s and don’ts. It is crafted by the Creator of the universe, a loving God, who left us, for now, with his presence and guidance. If you see it only as commandments and rules, you miss the love God has for you.

The Bible is parental guidance to help us in this frustrating, painful, confusing, difficult world.

Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.

When I was a young Christian, book smart and knowledgeable, I had misplaced zeal.

Don’t misunderstand. God never, ever forgets our labor of love. A toddler who picks a bouquet of long awaited perennial flowers from your garden and hands them to you is rewarded with a smile.

But that doesn’t mean you don’t teach your child what is allowable and what is not.

Peter resonates with me when he cut off the centurion’s ear prior to Jesus’ arrest in the garden. He thought he was protecting Jesus when in fact, he did not understand.

It took Peter three situations to bring him face to face with what he really thought: “Even if I have to die with you, I will never deny you!”

Jesus did not rebuke Peter. He did not disown him. He did not reject him.

God loves us and is patient with us.

Yet, he will teach us what is allowable and what is not.

God’s heart is not to harm you but to give you hope and a future. It will not always look the way you thought or the way you want.

We all have a light we depend on guiding us through life.

What is your light?

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Photo by Anatolii Kiriak on Pexels.com
light to my path.

light to my path.

This might seem trite to some who are reading, but please know it is not meant to be.

I am familiar with tragedy.

I am familiar with great emotional pain.

Trite is not in my vocabulary.

Today, I am writing to Christians. Men and women who know the Bible is what it says it is: a lamp to our feet and a light to our path.

Yet, how often we neglect to remember this when we navigate through life, especially when it’s dark.

God gives humanity tools to use. In his goodness, people are not even aware they have used those tools and where they came from.

Christians know.

And yet, how often do we find ourselves going in a direction without the light to guide us.

It is very common and understandable to lash out at life, others, and even God when we’re hurting. The Psalms are full of the human response to pain.

If you stay in that state, you will become miserable and bitter. You will never find the peace you are looking for.

Many continue down this path, well, because we’re human.

Humans with emotions.

Emotions that need to be filtered through the light of God’s word. Emotions not tethered to something will wander to unknown places, causing even more upheaval to our well being.

God gently speaks to our pain.

Do you want to hear?

The words God speaks throughout the Bible is the very thing keeping me protected, calm, strong, patient, and yes … even joyful.

The joy happens after I have taken hold of his words of life as my own. When I find they work, the joy comes, because I know God is real and means what he says.

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photo credit: kudumomo