In All My Ways

“Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart
and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding.  In all
of your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct
and make straight and plain your paths.”  Proverbs 3:5- 6 AMP

My middle daughter turned 13 a few weeks ago.  She wanted to have her
ears pierced for her birthday, so we headed to the mall.  After the
successful piercing, we decided to meander around the other stores for
a bit.  “Mom, I’ve got to go!”, one of my daughter’s chimed.  There’s no
easy place to find a restroom in the mall, but I knew we were close
to the food court, so we headed that direction.

There used to be stairs and an escalator at this end of the mall, but with remodeling
they had removed the stairs.  I’m not a fan of escalators.  

I didn’t grow up terrified of escalators.  I kind of thought they were fun as a
youth, and like most kids, I would ride them in circuit if I could
get away with it.  A few years ago though, some damage was done
to my inner ear, and certain movements send me into panic mode.  Much
has improved, and I usually can do motion a lot better, so I thought
surely the escalator ride would be a breeze this time.  I also didn’t
want to search a near by department store for an elevator, which is
what I normally do.  So, I sent my daughter ahead of me, and stepped
onto the moving steps, holding onto the insync rail.  I stared at the
steps in front of me, not wanting to miss it when I had to step off.
You know the awkward stumble off if you don’t.  All was good, until
about three fourths the way up, and all of a sudden it felt like I was
going to fall backwards off the thing.  My grip tightened.

In an instant, my heart was pounding, my hands and feet cold and clammy, my
face red, and images of falling filling my head.  I tried leaning
forward as far as I could, and called my daughter’s name in
desperation.  I jumped off the thing, unnerved, and headed to the
bathroom.

My husband and other kids met us before we were to head down.  “I need
to find an elevator.” I stated trying to explain to my husband.  I had
almost changed directions when I heard the voice in my ear.  “I want
you to go down the escalator.”  “What?”  Immediately, I tried to
reason with the Holy Spirit, as my pastor calls Him, Holy Sneaky.  It
didn’t work.  He said, “Remember the boat?”

A few years back when our churches merged, Papa talked to me a lot of
about getting into a boat, which of course is not the best place to be
when you have motion issues.  That summer He had provided the
opportunity for a day with some friends on Lake Junaluska.  What He taught me is
that is if you keep your eyes on the horizon, then you won’t feel sick
and in my case panic.  At the time, I didn’t even know this to be a
proven scientific thing.  I had just trusted, obeyed, gotten in the
boat, and for dear life kept my eyes on the horizon.  I lived.  It was
actually somewhat fun until we went in circles.  But I made it with
little issue.

“Don’t look at the steps.  Keep your eyes up on where I am taking
you.”  I knew immediately what He meant, but at first I wanted to run
to find the elevator.  In a split decision to just trust Him, I
grabbed the shoulder of my husband in front of me, and took that first
precarious step to ride the escalator down.  I resisted my instincts
to focus on the moving steps in front of me, and looked out where I
was going to go in the mall.  I was fine.  I could hardly believe it,
but it hadn’t bothered me in the least.

I have found in the last few weeks, this event something Papa has
referred me back to over and over again.  See, you really can’t submit
and obey with your whole heart, unless you can trust your heavenly Father.

What if He asks you to take a step into the unknown?  What if He asks
you to speak a word of encouragement that makes no sense? Or how
about a complete change of direction in ministry?  Or maybe it’s
saying yes, when asked to do something by a leader or your spouse, and
it’s not what you wanted to do?  Can you trust your heavenly Father,
to take care of you, to work it out for your good?

We can play it safe, never stepping out, and missing what God has for
us.  Or we may try to figure out all the steps, and find ourselves
dizzy, panicked, overwhelmed. OR if we can just trust God, take the leap
He’s asking us, get our eyes off the steps, and onto Him and where He
is taking us, we will find the ride much more pleasant.  It might even
feel like fun!

“Trust and obey for there’s no other way to happy in Jesus, but to
trust and obey.”  The words to the old hymn ring true.  You really
can’t have one without the other.

I’ve listened to the song, “Good, Good Father” a lot in the last
couple of weeks, as I have grieved a transition in my own life.  I don’t
like change.  I like safety and stability.  I’m not normally a cliff
jumper seeking a thrill.  I have issues riding escalators!  But
whether it’s jumping off a cliff, or stepping on moving steps, it all
takes some trust, some courage to do what you’re afraid to do.  It takes some
submission to His authority, and an act of obedience.  You really
can’t know that you are truly trusting someone, without the action of obedience.
Just keep your eyes up, dear friends, and your focus on where He is
taking you.  It will be a fun ride.

Activation Prayer

Father,I trust you.  Help me to trust you.  I can’t do anything outside of
you.  Everything good comes from you.  You have filled me with the Spirit
of Jesus.  I am more than an overcomer, because Jesus lives in me, and
the very nature and essence of God fills my being.  I am confident in
you!  I lean completely into you!  If you move, I move.  My eyes are
fixed on you and where you are taking me.  Not on the steps, because
they can feel overwhelming at times.  Holy Spirit, I trust you to
guide me, to lead me into all truth, to lead me down the paths that
you have for me.  You are the great counselor.  I won’t lean on my own
understanding, but in all my ways, I will acknowledge you and look to
you for guidance, so I know what  steps to take.  I trust you to lead
me on the right paths, and to make my way straight even when it seems
windy, or unclear.  I trust you; therefore, I submit and obey, because
I know you.  I know your character.  I know you love me!  I trust you,
because I know you love me and have my best in interest in mind!  I am
yours.  You are mine.  In Jesus’s Name, AmenI

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