I go out Walking

This past Saturday, I took a walk.  

Now, when I say “walk,” I don’t mean just a breeze around the block. No – this walk was much more than that.  

All throughout my young adult life, walks have played a part in my spiritual growth. A few years ago, I had a hard conversation with a friend at Starbucks. I left feeling sad and confused about what the Lord was doing in my life. I drove to the nature preserve down the road and went walking. When my job after college wasn’t all that I thought it was going to be, I walked. As I struggled with singleness, I did the same. For an hour or more, I would walk. I would sing. I would pray. I would listen.

Life over the past few months has been interesting.

In the middle of August, my husband and I picked up our Bostonian life and moved to Midland, Texas. I started school, my husband went to work for the family business, and life officially changed. Although many things about the change were wonderful, I had a hard time (and still can have a hard time) adjusting to everything.

You see, I have a problem.

I want to control my life. I want my marriage to look a certain way, and if it doesn’t, I get upset. I want my day-to-day circumstances to operate in a particular fashion, and if they don’t, I try to change them. I see the sin in my life, and despise it. What do I do? You got it! I try to fix it.

Now, before I get too far, I must state the following:

I think seeing negative things in your life and seeking to improve them is a good thing. The harm rests in how you do it. For me, the process consists of self-dependence. I analyze what conversations I need to have, what I need to do, and how I am going to do it. I white-knuckle it. If the issue is anger, I try to stop snapping and instead try to pray through conflict. If it’s discontentment, I strive to be more thankful.

The problem is it doesn’t work.

It’s exhausting, and it’s why I went on a walk.

In Deuteronomy 11, Moses is giving the Israelites instructions for living.

“Observe, therefore all the commands I am giving you today, so that you may have the strength to go in and take over the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, and so that you may live long in the land that the Lord swore to your forefathers to give to them and their descendants, a land flowing with milk and honey…The land you are crossing over the Jordan to take possession of is a land of mountains and valleys that drinks rain from heaven…[The Lord] will send rain on your land in season, both autumn and spring rains, so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and oil. [The Lord] will provide grass in the fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied” (verses 8, 9, 11, 14, and 15).

 

The Lord, through Moses, told the Israelites how to live. He promised them that if they lived in accordance to his laws, He would take care of them. They only needed to depend on Him to do it. If they were to fight, He would tell them when and where to go, and would eventually deliver their enemies into their hands. If they needed food, He would supply it. They needed only to trust and obey Him. He would take care of the rest.  

As I walked, I reflected on this.

There are things in my life (and things in my heart) that I want to change. There are things that I know are damaging to myself, as well as others, that I wish would just disappear. Even though, at times, I feel like it’s impossible, I know that the Lord is the solution.

“For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin” (Romans 6:6).

 

Sin has been rendered powerless in my life because of Christ’s death on the cross. I don’t have to mastered by sin.  

I also know that God provides (as seen in Deuteronomy).  

I don’t believe the Lord promises me nice possessions or circumstances that don’t cause pain, but I do believe He is the supplier of joy and peace (Romans 15:13), and He is the giver of life (John 14:6).

Just like He encouraged the Israelites to trust Him and rely on Him for provision, He asks the same of us. Obedience leads to joy and peace, and if we are in need, He is there.

As I walked, I prayed that I would depend on Him and not on myself. I prayed that He would humble me so that, in life and conflict, I didn’t always have to be the winner. I prayed that He would allow me to trust Him with the circumstances in life and train me to respond rightly to them. I praised Him for His goodness, and I rested in His peace.

What’s going to happen during my lifetime is still a mystery, but I do know that, in the end, life will be full. Heaven is going to be amazing, and it’s promised to those who believe. However, as I walk on this earth, I have to remember that I’m not God. I can’t control everything, and even when things I don’t like are happening, I have to let go.

The Lord is the only one with the power to change hearts and the ability to completely control situations. I’m praying that I trust Him.

I don’t know what’s going on in your life, but I do know that He knows where you are, and He listens to your cries. Go on a walk. Let Him know what’s going on. He’s faithful.  

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