Yesterday I went for a walk at the park… a park that I walk at frequently. I’m a creature of habit and I always walk the route that doesn’t go under the shade trees, because ticks and stuff.. gross! I NEVER go under the trees.
But on yesterday’s walk, when I got to the fork between the path into the trees and the normal path under the sun, God began to speak to my heart. He told me to take the path under the shade trees.
Immediately fear set in. “But God, that is different… that is uncomfortable.. I don’t want to go that way.”
Never the less, I embarked down the shade tree path. As I began walking under the trees on this unfamiliar path, there was the most refreshing breeze. The sun had been blazing and for a momma with a five week old baby in a stroller, it had been a struggle down my familiar path. The breeze felt so nice. Immediately God began to speak.
“Jordan, sometimes in life I call you to walk down unfamiliar paths. When I call you to walk down bear paths remember that I know the whole story. The unfamiliar path I call you to walk down just may be the very path you must take to find the rest your soul needs.”
I continued down the unfamiliar path taking in the views. I felt accomplished.. proud of myself for listening when God said “This is the way, now walk in it.” But then something unexpected happened. I began to notice a short cut in the path. A nice little cutoff road that would take me back to my familiar trail. I immediately wanted to take it. I began to think “I already heard God speak.. that was so nice, now I can take the short cut back to what is familiar. I learned the lesson, now I can go back to my normal route.”
But the Holy Spirit began to urge me to go further. He said “Jordan, we’ve come this far down this path, don’t you want to see what more I have for you on this journey?”
And I did…. I so desperately wanted to see what else he had for me.
Isn’t that how we are in life? We avoid the unfamiliar. We shrink back in fear when God calls us to walk down the unfamiliar path. Then, if we do somehow find the Holy courage to take the unfamiliar road, you can be certain there will be shortcuts back to familiar at every turn.. opportunities to take the easy route…
Today I encourage you… go down the unfamiliar path… don’t take the shortcuts.. and maybe, just maybe, you will find the joy and rest you’ve been looking for all along.