A lamp to my feet and a light to my path
Sometimes, I find that life can actually be quite simple, yet I complicate it unnecessarily with all kinds of questions and concerns about tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year. That unnecessary complexity then leads to anxiety, depression, fear, worry, procrastination, or even the sense that I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing or why I’m doing it. Honestly, I used to think I was pretty solid emotionally. But the truth is that I’m a bit of a basket case sometimes!
This is when I find one particular verse of Scripture to be particularly helpful:
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. -Psalm 119:105
I’ve heard it said that the words “light to my path” speak of the Lord showing us where he is taking us, what lies in our future, and where we are going in more of a long-term sense. However, the words “lamp to my feet” speak of the Lord showing us nothing more than our next step.
In some seasons of life, the Lord knows that we need information about what’s coming tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year. A great example of this in Scripture is when Jesus speaks to Peter after the resurrection:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to gird yourself, and walk wherever you wished; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will gird you, and bring you where you do not wish to go.” Now this He said, signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God. And when He had spoken this, He said to him, “Follow Me!” -John 21:18-19
However, in other seasons of life, the Lord knows that what we really need is to be trusting him on a day-to-day basis without specific knowledge of what may be coming next. A great example of this in Scripture is when the three young Hebrew men, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, refused to worship the image that was made by Nebuchadnezzar in Babylon. After commanding them “to fall down and worship the image…” (Daniel 3:15), the king threatened that if they wouldn’t comply, they would “immediately be cast into the midst of a furnace of blazing fire…” (Daniel 3:15). I love their response:
Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” -Daniel 3:16-18
It’s as though they were saying, “We don’t know for sure what’s going to happen in this situation. We don’t know if our lives will be spared, or if this is the end for us. But we’re certain of this one thing - we’re going with the Lord. He is our king and we will follow no other.”
Friends, when all you can see is one step in front of you, hold the line with the Lord. We can trust Him to see us through in any and every circumstance!
Many blessings, Pat MacGibbon