“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and he will direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
Sometimes growth steps are just putting one foot in front of the other, even when you cannot clearly see the way to go. It is stepping forward toward a faithful God daily. Not because you can see the path, but because you are following a faithful God who has led you in the past. Sometimes the steps we are taking are painful, but they are growing us into the person that God intends for us to be. Sometimes those steps feel like we’ve walked this way before, stepping into the unknown, knowing God is leading us there, but not knowing where we are going. Those are the hardest growth steps to take! We have prayed, we have read God’s word, we have fasted, and now we must simply continue to walk daily, one step at a time, in complete trust and obedience.
These are the hardest Growth Steps to take. They call for blind trust and obedience in the same direction. Our human nature wants a map! We want to have the path drawn out for us, calculated ahead of time. We want to know what to expect around the next bend. But these are not patterned steps. These are steps of blind obedience and faith! They are steps through darkness, when we cannot see anything ahead of us. They are steps through the fog where the mist hangs so dense that we know something is there, but we do not know what it is. Other times, we have taken steps upon the sand, but if we turn and look back, they have been washed away. Yet we are called to faithfully step one step at a time toward Him. The steps are heavy as we put one foot in front of the other. They can at times produce great fear, fear that paralyzes us and stops us in our tracks! But the steps are necessary and they are taking us to the place that God is calling us to. Our faith in God has to be greater than our fear of stepping forward. So we must continue to call out to Him, to cry out to Him with our whole heart. We must pick up our foot and put it in front of the other, to know that if He is calling us to take the steps, then they are moving us in the right direction!
Our challenge is to pick our feet up every day when they feel as heavy as bricks, our strength and courage must come from Him!
“Trust and obey, for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus (or to step confidently in His direction), but to trust and obey.”
Praying, and trusting and obeying.
Reading God’s word daily must be our constant companion! Crying out to Him continuously in prayer must be the first whisper our voice makes in the morning, and the last plea our weary heart makes before we lay our head down at night. God and God alone must be our constant companion, for only He can direct these growth steps!
You may be going through them yourself, and you can’t make sense of the path God is taking you down. You may have a loved one you are watching go through these growth steps: a beloved nephew, a precious niece, a son or a daughter… They have given their whole heart to someone else just to see it crushed, and yet they must continue to put one foot in front of the other and keep walking down God’s path to grow! Maybe it is a sister who is letting go of yet another child who will leave her home, and is taking the steps toward maturity and growth on their own. Meanwhile, a sister is learning to grow in her own way as the number of children in her home diminishes, and her growth steps take a different direction? Or perhaps, it is watching a sister take growth steps toward God meeting the needs of her heart as a friend betrays her? Or praying for another dear sister as she waits and trusts in God’s clear direction for her and her husband. Maybe it is watching a parent as they navigate the golden years of growing older: more aches and pains, and the mind isn’t as sharp and clear as it once was. Their growth steps occur as they slow down, and each step becomes shorter and more regulated.
Many times in my life’s journey, I’ve been through this process. I’ve always given praise and honor to the Lord my God, because in hindsight, I’ve seen where He was leading me and why I needed to go through that particular journey. He was always with me; He is always faithful! And by faith I’m convinced that He will indeed direct my path once more, and lead me to another place where I can serve Him and help build His Kingdom. My life’s Bible verse becomes my sure anchor that holds me close to my God:
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
The tiny growth steps I took as a child while my grandma was holding my hand come to my mind quicker than any other memory, and help steady me through this course. The songs she sang to me about her faith and trust in Jesus, while I knew her path had never been an easy one, ring in my ears and in my heart, and steady me. “Trust and Obey, for there’s no other way, to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.”
When we can’t see the step ahead of us, growth steps occur as we trust and obey in Jesus.
Growth steps can be those we lead others by, or growth steps can be those we are led by. Ultimately, all growth steps lead us in the direction of Jesus. Whatever growth steps God is calling you to take, or whatever difficult growth steps you’re going through, I pray that you’ll have the confidence in knowing that by trusting and obeying our powerful, BIG God, He will direct your path!
Speak Truth Love