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Topic: Discipleship (02/23/04)
TITLE: In His Steps
By Faithaline Stanislaus
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I remember when He began to lead me across the desert called “Humility.” I wonder what caused me to think that I knew the way well enough to make it on my own without Him. I foolishly went on ahead of Him, trudging my way across the sand dunes. The way ahead looked plain and clear to me, so how difficult could it be? I ended up getting lost in a sea of sand, until finally, disoriented and frustrated, I cried out to Him for help. I was under the impression that I had left Him miles behind, however he showed up as soon as I called. This experience taught me to lean on my Guide more, and to realize that I was never meant to travel independently of Him.
Recently we trekked through the valley of “Fear.” I was following my Guide along a dirt path through the valley, when I suddenly heard footsteps behind me. I took my eyes off my Guide and looked to the rear. I saw no one, and when I turned back my Guide was nowhere to be seen. Panic began to rise up within me, and I quickened my pace. I could still hear the footsteps behind me, and they seemed to be getting closer, however I did not see anyone when I turned back. In my mind, I began to rehearse my Guide’s faithfulness and care of me along the journey so far, and His great strength. I soon realized that He must surely be stronger than whoever was following me. I also surmised that whoever was behind me must certainly be a coward, not being brave enough to show himself. I slackened my pace until I had come to a standstill. Then I turned around, ready to face whoever was behind me. I was not going to face him alone, however. I called out to my Guide, and immediately he was at my side. As for the footsteps—I could still hear them running, except now in the opposite direction. After this episode I knew that if I ever heard the footsteps again I would not run away in a panic like I had done this time.
Yesterday we descended a mountain called “Mercy” (Lamentations 3:22-23). When we were almost to the bottom, I took my eyes off my Guide, my foot slipped and I fell. My attention was caught by a piece of broken glass sticking out of the ground. The sunlight had caught the object, causing it to glisten. My Guide lifted me up, and when I was on my two feet again, I avoided looking into His eyes. “I’m sorry, that was stupid,” I mumbled. I was sure that he was going to berate me for my foolishness. But instead, he simply looked me over to make sure I was not hurt, and then stuck even closer by me for the duration of the journey that day. Not once did he make mention of my failure.
I enjoy it most when we spend time beside the lakes. A few days ago we sat at the water’s edge and dipped our feet in a lake called “Love.” Near the lakes my Guide sings many songs over me. (Zephaniah 3:17) He promises me that He will never leave me. (Hebrews 13:5) He says that He could never forget me (Isaiah 49:15-16) and that He has always loved me. (Jeremiah 31:3) His words comfort and strengthen me for the journey ahead. I am also encouraged to trust Him more. Where he leads me, I will follow.