People plan their path,
but the Lord secures their steps.
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Life is often unpredictable. Plan what we may, in reality, our circumstances and experiences cause us to change course. No one lives the exact life they have planned, yet “the Lord secures their steps.”
This pithy proverb may spark an age-old theological debate: are our steps in life already determined? While some Christians believe that our lives are predetermined, this is not the case for Methodists. Rather than speak to the great theological debate through this devotional, Methodists believe that although we are first saved by grace, we must then actively choose to live faith-filled lives as Christ’s people. But how do we take faith-filled steps as Christ’s hands and feet in the world?
I know it’s cheesy, but whenever I think about taking faith-filled steps, I often imagine the movie clip from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. While Jones and his father are searching for the “Holy Grail,” Jones must literally step out into what he fears is open air in order to save his father. We can identify with this metaphoric struggle of stepping out blindly as faith-filled beings. Somedays, stepping out in faith may be our natural behavior, but other times it feels impossible. We may feel that we are stepping out blindly into empty air, to trust that God is securing our steps, but sometimes this blind faith is not easily found.
Here’s a real-life example: today, January 6th, is also the Epiphany, which is the day the magi arrived to see the baby Jesus. Think about the magi walking through several countries, following a presence that they couldn’t explain, searching for the Savior they had never seen. Trusting God and then faithfully stepping out into the unknown is really hard, but we must remember that God is always with us.
By Barbara Carlson
For Pondering & Prayer
In our daily walk with you, Lord, how can we take faith-filled steps that honor your hands and feet in the world? What steps in my faith walk do I need to take for others?
Prayer: Lord, secure my steps, so that I may walk while knowing and sensing Your grace along the way. Amen.