May 12, 2023
Trusting God or Getting Antsy?
LISA ROETTGER, COMPEL Training Member
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“Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” Psalm 119:105 (NIV)
It was a dark, moonless night in southern Sudan. I was walking from the house to our sleeping hut, trusting that my bush lamp, a small kerosene lantern, would light my way.
But the puddle of light before me was only enough to illuminate the next few steps, not enough to show me the small hut I hoped was lying ahead. Starting to feel a little anxious, I thought, Where is the hut? Shouldn’t I be there by now? Am I even on the right path?
I needed more light. Stopping, I held up my lamp, stretching my arm out as far as I could.
But I’d picked the wrong spot to stop and question the way — right in the middle of a trail of army ants. They took advantage of my hesitation to let me know how much I’d annoyed them. Scurrying up my legs, they began to bite, oblivious to the fact that I’d meant them no harm.
Under their none-too-gentle prodding, I took off again, choosing the only option left: keeping to the bit of path I could see, trusting it would take me to my destination. Thankfully, it did.
After arriving and removing all the ants, I had a chance to think and was reminded of Psalm 119:105: “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” Like the oil lamps of Old Testament times, and like my bush lamp, God’s Word may light only a few feet of path, illuminating the next few steps He wants me to take. Yet often in life, I find myself demanding to see the final destination. Where are You taking me, Lord? I ask. I want a spotlight, not this feeble bush lamp!
What options do we have when we want to see farther than God reveals? We can stop in our tracks, refusing to go another step more until God shows us His entire plan. We can struggle to illuminate the path ourselves, trying to figure out the final destination and the best way there on our own.
Or we can trust God and His Word.
God often lights just enough of the path for us to take the next few steps. We may not like it. We may want to know more. We may want to know all. But God wants us to trust Him and His Word. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6, NIV). When we, in faith, take those first steps, the light will move forward with us, and we’ll be able to see the next bit of path God wants us to follow.
We don’t have to get antsy after all. We can choose to trust the Lord instead.
Lord, thank You that time and time again, You have shown Yourself trustworthy. Help me to take those first steps forward that You want me to take, fully trusting You even when I can’t see the entire way. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
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FOR DEEPER STUDY
Psalm 25:4-5, “Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long” (NIV).
Is there something the Lord has been leading you to do, something you’ve been hesitating to start? Are you willing to take that first step today, believing you can trust God to guide you all along the way?
If you’re still hesitating, turn to the Lord and pray the prayer spoken by the father of a boy oppressed by an unclean spirit: “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24, NIV). And share your thoughts with us in the comments today!
© 2023 by Lisa Roettger. All rights reserved.