Journeying with God

A person journeying through the mountains on a rocky path one spring day.

Have you ever had a calling or a dream that you were ready to run after? But even in the midst of knowing WHAT to do, you didn’t have any idea HOW to actually do it?

Me too.

At least we’re not alone! The Bible tells us of many more.

Abraham journeyed from his home to follow God without even knowing where he was going.

Ruth desired to support her mother-in-law and was looking for any possible way to do so.

Moses followed the call to lead the people out of Egypt without a plan for how that would happen.

What did they all have in common? Faith

Journeying by Faith

These individuals had a belief that God would keep His end of the deal. A belief that if God had given a promise, a dream, a calling then He would show them the next right step on their journey.

And He always did.

Faith: If God gives a dream, He will show you the next right step. Images - footprints in sand and wooden steps leading up

But when did He show them that next step? After they took the first one.

After Abraham left his family and everything he had ever known.

After Ruth left her country and went into the fields to glean.

After Moses went before Pharaoh.

Faith requires risk. At least it’s a risk to our logical and rational mind.

But it’s not really a risk if God has put the desire in our heart. He put it there. He wants us to go after it. And if that is true, then He’s just waiting on us.

Really then, perhaps it’s truer that faith requires … well … simply, faith. A belief that God is who He says He is.

Faith also requires action. Taking the next step on the journey. Doing the next right thing.

It’s not really faith if I only dream of what could happen but never step out and allow it to happen.

But what happens if I actually do step out? If I actually live by faith? Some pretty amazing things.

Abraham became the friend of God and has descendants too numerous to count.

Ruth was gifted a family that was in the line of the Messiah.

Moses led God’s people out of slavery and to the promised land. He was a type of Christ.

Have you ever stopped to consider that God doesn’t actually want you to know HOW to do what He’s asking you to do?

If you knew how to do it, you’d end up relying on yourself. You’d move too fast. Or maybe too slow. You’d miss out on drawing closer to Him on the journey. It would become all about you instead of all about Him.

My Journey with God

I’m in another season where God is asking me to step out. In numerous ways. In numerous arenas at once.

I’ve had those seasons before. They all seemed scary at the time. Especially for a planner! But they all ended with stories to tell of a God who orchestrates the details of my journey in ways I could never imagine.

This time seems a bit riskier somehow. Maybe because it’s in multiple arenas at the same time. Or maybe because it’s reminding me of just how little I know about anything. Of just how dependent I am on God.

As I was thinking about this last week and telling God once again that I would trust Him on the journy. He led me to Isaiah. I got caught up in the story but when I got to this verse it was as if He was speaking directly and only to me.

But I’ll take the hand of those who don’t know the way,

who can’t see where they’re going.

I’ll be a personal guide to them,

directing them through unknown country.

I’ll be right there to show them what roads to take,

make sure they don’t fall into the ditch.

These are the things I’ll be doing for them—

sticking with them, not leaving them for a minute.

(Isaiah 42:16 MSG)

What a promise! I’ve gone back and reread this a lot this week! Here are truths that are anchoring my soul:

  • God is holding my hand. I don’t have to see where the road goes.
  • God is personally guiding me. He sees me. He knows me. He cares for me.
  • God will keep me out of ditches. I can simply listen and follow.
  • God is doing all of this for me. 24/7, 365 days a year. I can rest in Him.

What beauty is in that one verse! What strength it offers. What life God has given to us.

Isaiah 42:16 (The Message) Images - same person journeying through mountains and sign posts pointing down three different roads

A Journey WITH God

As I was pondering this again today, I recalled another story from the New Testament where a disciple wanted to know HOW to get somewhere.

The story takes place in John 14. Jesus is telling His disciples that He is going to prepare a place for them. And that He will come again to get them so they can be together again. Then He says,

And you know the way to where I am going. (v4)

Thomas very quickly speaks up. Before you read what he says, think about who Thomas is. He’s a detailed, by the book kind of a guy. He doesn’t believe anything until he sees it or it’s proven to him. He can get caught up in the little things and miss the big picture.

So when he hears what Jesus says, I imagine that he panics just a bit. He doesn’t understand what in the world Jesus is talking about. He’s missed the big picture. All he knows is that he doesn’t know what he’s supposed to do next.

Thomas said to him, ‘Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?’ (v5)

Not only does he not know the next step of the journey, he’s missed the destination too!

And look at Jesus’ answer. It’s so profound. And yet so simple. He doesn’t lay out a great plan or give him multiple next steps to follow. Jesus simply says to him,

I am the way, and the truth, and the life. (v6)

Do you realize what Jesus is really saying here? Keep your eyes on Me. Believe in Me. Have faith in Me. Trust Me. Follow Me.

Jesus is both the destination and the path to it. Jesus will reveal the truth along the journey. Abundant life comes through Jesus.

Jesus is the way that is talked about in Isaiah 42:16. All along from beginning to end, God has desired for His people to journey with Him as they journey to Him.

Jesus is the way of salvation from sin, but He is so much more. Jesus is the way of hope and of laughter. He is the way of contentment and of faith. Jesus is the way of companionship and victory. Jesus is the way of grace.

You can only experience life with God as He intended as you journey with Him taking the next right step.

Your Journey with God

God is ready to be your personal guide. He is holding out His hand to you. It might feel risky, but it’s not really. He is faithful. He will always come through.

It will require action on your part, though. A step of faith.

You can’t imagine what good things He has in store. For you. For others. For your heart.

And in the end, it’s not so much about that particular calling or dream, although He can use that to profoundly impact others. It’s really about your journey with Him. Plunging yourself into the fullness of His character and finding rest and hope and purpose.

So, read His Word. Ponder its truth. And listen for God’s whispers to your heart.

Isaiah 42:16 (The Message) Images - same person journeying through mountains and sign posts pointing down three different roads

Then take His hand and journey with Him, wherever He is asking you to go.

You’ll never regret it!

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