Feet Like Deer

There are days when it feels like walking a tightrope.  Lean either direction and we will fall over. Maybe fall over and not get back up.  The tension feels unbearable. We can’t please anyone, we are failing in whatever way possible.

When it feels hard and impossible, when the hill or mountain in front of us feels insurmountable, we come face to face with our own limitations.

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We know that there is no way that we ourselves can accomplish or tackle what we face each day.  It’s daunting to live the human experience, and to do it with any measure of success on our own.  

Whether it is getting that baby to sleep, to go on that date after a heartbreak, to complete that huge project at work, to finish the degree while working full time, or even to fold that laundry on your guest bed.

We are faced with situations in life that we aren’t able to overcome, we just don’t have it in us.  Especially if we try to do it alone.

I don’t know about you but when I get to these moments, I just want rescue.  I want God to make the situation to go away, I want to it to be easier. I get tired of facing the impossible all the time.

Why can’t my 6th hour just stop talking?  Why can’t I just find the one? Why can’t my toddler just obey the first time I ask?  Why can’t my spouse change their mind about this thing? Why can’t I get that promotion?

We would love to have that mountain flattened out into a valley or the issue resolved so that life is just a little easier.  We want the easy way out. 

However, sometimes, God doesn’t crumble that mountain.  He doesn’t vanquish our enemy before the battle. He doesn’t promise the easy life at all.  In fact he tells us that we will have trials. We will face suffering. We will face struggles.  Some as a result of our own sin and some because of the broken world.  

But God does promise to be with us. He does promise his presence and help in the time of need.

For who is God, but the LORD?
And who is a rock, except our God?—
the God who equipped me with strength
and made my way blameless.
He made my feet like the feet of a deer
and set me secure on the heights.
He trains my hands for war,
so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.
You have given me the shield of your salvation,
and your right hand supported me,
and your gentleness made me great.
You gave a wide place for my steps under me,
and my feet did not slip. -Psalm 18:31–36 (ESV)

In Psalm 18, it says that he equips us with strength and makes our feet like deer and secures us in the heights.   He doesn’t always take us from the heights of those mountains we are in, but helps us be secure and abilities to navigate the heights.  

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I spent the last 8 months of my life navigating some difficult terrain.  God was leading me out of the job I had for the last 4 years and the district I had been working in for the last 10.  But it didn’t work out the way I had planned. I had a lot of time to question my ability to actually get to where God had for me.  I questioned that this step was the right one to take. I questioned whether I had heard God right.  

And don’t get me wrong, I stumbled, cried in my office a lot, and even wrestled with doubt all the time.  But God didn’t let me go. He kept me in that spot, and he showed up in my friends, my family, and even some middle school students.  

Honestly, I couldn’t understand why didn’t just work out the details quicker.  It would have made a lot of sense, right. 

Now on the other side of things, I see a little bit of what God was doing.  How he was drawing me near to trust him. How he wanted to make sure I knew that it was Him working out the details.  He gave me the space before answering the prayer to move toward him and continue in trust.  

Don’t get me wrong, there is some of the story that just doesn’t seem clear, that I will someday ask God to explain.  

Now, reading this you might think, “well you can write this because it all worked out.” True, my situation looks different than it did 8 months ago, but there are other things in my life that God hasn’t worked out, other ways that my prayers haven’t been answered and longings still unmet.  I think on this side of heaven there will always be those things.

Friends, I write this because I need to be reminded that God hasn’t forgotten me.  So much of the last probably 2-3 years of my life, I felt that way.  I felt forgotten and alone in my situation.  And I there will probably another time in my life that I feel the same way again.  Maybe you feel that, maybe you don’t, but God is moving and working in ways we won’t ever comprehend and we can trust him.

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And that is the sweet spot, walking in trust when the answer or path isn’t clear.  That part of the journey is actually sweeter than the other side.  The times I had no other choice to cry out and ask him to help me through the high places.  Experiencing his presence and work was and still is one of the ways that continues to build my trust in Him.  

 

 

1- Photo by Galen Crout on Unsplash

2- Photo by Scott Carroll on Unsplash

3- Photo by Paul Gilmore on Unsplash

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