Blog – October 27, 2012
Taking The Road Less TraveledDiscussion
As I consider where the Lord is leading my life now, and as I reflect on the path He has taken me on to get me to where I am today, I am struck by the fact that I have always been predisposed to take the road less traveled. As the oldest child in a very large family, I was always the first to experience things. Compared to my brothers and sisters, I was the first to get immunizations, the first to go to the dentist for a filling, the first to graduate school, the first to go to college, the first to join the military, and so on.
The interesting thing about taking the road less traveled is that you don’t see many people on it, and you really don’t know what to expect at any point in the journey. Christ tells us in Matthew 7:13-14 that the followers of Christ are not to follow the normal path either: "Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." [NIV]
Taking the road less traveled means having a faith in Christ that is so strong that no matter the obstacles, the turns, or the hills on the road, you are confident that Christ is leading you on that specific path and you have assurance that in the end you will reach your destination. I am also comforted when I travel this road by Psalm 119:105, which reads, "Your word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." As the result of many years of mistakes on the highway of life, I have learned that the most efficient way to reach my destination is by taking one step at a time, and being aware of the path directly in front of me—and not as much on the road off in the distance. Similarly, this is how we are to follow Christ, through a walk that is one single step a time, typically without a complete understanding regarding why Christ is taking us down the path he leads us on, but with unwavering assurance that we are on the right path.
Perhaps today you are facing challenges that you’ve never experienced before, traveling a path that you’ve never traveled; and you feel alone and confused. I’ve been there as well, and it can be a real struggle—especially when you think that you’re alone in your struggle. However, I’ve come to recognize that during every event in my life, Christ has been there—never once has He abandoned me. I’ve learned that it’s okay to be afraid, it’s okay to be nervous or anxious; because this is the human side of us and it is what draws us closer to God. In Romans 8:28 Paul tells us "that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose". Even though I may have suffered, or struggled, or have been hurt in some way by a challenge in my life, I’ve later come to see that God was using it to build me up, not to tear me down. It is from these experiences that we grow in our walk with him, and through this, He is able to use us to minister to others.
Just as my experiences growing up enabled me help my brothers and sisters when they encountered challenges, the same is true with God: the challenges that God has brought me through have become tools that I can use to help others today.
Change is like that—challenging, struggling, the road less traveled. Whether it’s change at home with a personal relationship, or change in the work place, or even change in the church; as God works His will, He often leads us down the road less traveled. What I continue to garner from this is that I need to stay close to Christ in order to ensure that the path is well lit, and to ensure that fear of the unknown does not cloud my judgment. I commend that to you today. No matter what struggle you face, put your emotions at rest as best as you can by laying your fears, anxieties, and concerns at the feet of Christ. Psalm 23 tells us Christ is our Shepherd, and we are to follow where He leads—even when the path may appear to lead through the "valley of death".
If we place our faith in Christ, and follow where He leads, we are assured of the outcome. 1 John 4:4 tells us "the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world", and Romans 8:31 asserts, "If God is for us, who can be against us?". So take the road less traveled as Christ leads you, and be assured that no matter the difficulties and struggles, it will all come together for good according to His divine will.
October 27, 2012