I’ve been contemplating what this walk means to me – what’s in the end result? Why all the pain, the confusion, the hurt? Why do I feel like such a failure sometimes? Will I ever be able to resist the patterns that I’ve become so comfortable with over the 40 years of my life? Can I do it?? Well, I’m reading Stormie Omartian’s “Just Enough Light for the Step I’m On”, and her words hit me: walking with God means trusting Him completely. God wants us to depend on Him fully. (Joshua 1:9, Jeremiah 17:7, Matthew 19:26) He wants a close relationship with us. He wants our undivided attention and our undivided trust. (Psalm 27:5) Hence, He tests our faith and our ability to resist sin. He sends us around the mountain of our faults in hopes that we will see clearly how He fits into our lives.
The dark times we sometimes go through can be compared to the wilderness that the Israelites experienced when they were led out of Egypt. The Israelites wanted God’s blesses but they circled the same mountain for 40 years, defying God and complaining. (Exodus 3:7-10, 15:22-26) He takes us through the same kind of wilderness in order that we can learn and grow…and trust Him in all we do. It’s up to us how long that part of our journey takes. More often than not, we get defiant like the Israelites. We demand to know where we are going, what He has in store for us, where the pain leads, why we aren’t getting there fast enough. Yet, if He tells us we might allow our doubts to hinder our progress. We might rush or impede what God has in store for us. In the darkness what He wants more than anything is for us to fully trust Him. He doesn’t put us through the wilderness to hurt us – He never wants to harm us. Some darkness we invite, but some darkness He provides so that His light can shine beyond doubt – but we need to put away our arrogant pride and recognize it. He wants to separate us from those comfortable habits we’ve formed that ultimately harm us and keep us away from Him, that keep us returning to that familiar darkness. He wants us to turn to Him and depend on Him. Lean on Him. He wants to be our Security blanket – he wants us to trust Him…by instinct.
It is important for us to see God’s hand in our lives. We must search Him fervently, seek Him vigorously and trust Him fully. Yeah, I know. That’s not easy…but, just like riding a bike, we have to keep going if we want to stop circling the mountain. All things happen for a reason – and it’s on God’s time when and whether He reveals them to us. I am not a failure when I follow His will. When we stop circling around the mountain, it seems normal to be a little seasick like when we step off a merry-go-round. But I don’t want to keep going around this mountain…instead, I am determined to climb it. I’m breaking the cycle. And I know, with God as my focus, with my full trust in Him, I will succeed.
The LORD said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey … And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.” ~ Exodus 3:7-10
“Then Moses led Israel from the Red Sea and they went into the Desert of Shur. For three days they traveled in the desert without finding water. When they came to Marah, they could not drink its water because it was bitter. (That is why the place is called Marah.) So the people grumbled against Moses, saying, “What are we to drink?”
Then Moses cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a piece of wood. He threw it into the water, and the water became sweet. There the LORD made a decree and a law for them, and there he tested them. He said, “If you listen carefully to the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you.” ~ Exodus 15:22-26
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go, I will counsel you and watch over you. ~ Psalm 32:8
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” ~ Joshua 1:9
Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?” ~ Hebrews 13:5-6
“But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him.” ~ Jeremiah 17:7
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” ~ John 14:27
Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” ~ Matthew 19:26
“For in the day of trouble He will keep me safe in his dwelling; He will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.” ~ Psalm 27:5