It was in September of 2011 that I made the choice to line up my life with the life Jesus had planned for me. It was an easy choice considering all that Christ had rescued me from. I was totally committed to living for Christ, no matter what it entailed… not fully aware of all that it would entail. Imagine a runner walking up to the start line, excited and confident… Not in her own ability but because she has the best trainer there is. She is ready and as she looks ahead, she sees a clear track. As far as she can see, the track is straight and there are no obstacles. She takes off and before she realizes, she hits a bend in the track and from that moment on she is hitting obstacle after obstacle. Some of the things thrown at her while on the track cause her to stumble and fall. She gets bruised and scrapped up pretty badly but she doesn’t quit. Just as she feels she can’t run any further, she looks out to see her trainer, right there, reminding her that she can do it because he is with her, she is not alone.
This is how walking on the path that God designed for us can often seem. We start out and God is blessing us tremendously. He is guiding us and speaking to us, walking right alongside of us. Then we hit a bend on the path… it seems dark and we feel alone. Maybe it’s the loss of a loved one, a dreadful report from the doctor, a loss of a job or other income. What once started out as a joyful person walking in complete faith is now someone who questions their worth and purpose. The dreams that God placed in our hearts begin to fade… Then we look out and see that Jesus never left. He is right there, encouraging us to just stay on the path.
For me it was immense financial challenges, a broken heart and disappointment after disappointment. I was on the path of God but all those dreams and desires I had seemed like they may have moved onto a different path. I started out full of light and life, believing God could do anything. After a few years on the path, I grew weary. One night while sitting with a group of women, one of them spoke and told me that I have to stay on the path. Everything my heart desires is on the path… Just keep going. A few others said the same thing to me over the next few months. I continued on my path… Every day, I woke up and lived… no matter what that meant for that day. Today, almost two years after that first word of encouragement to stay on the path, I am still on the path that God designed for me. I made it through the darkness of the track and I am finding my hearts desires. There are dreams on this path that I didn’t know existed. I wouldn’t have discovered them had I given up. The best part about this path, no matter how slow I traveled or how many times I fell down, Jesus was right next to me the whole time… Picking me up when I would fall and giving me wind to keep going when I felt like I couldn’t take another step. I don’t doubt that there will be more bends and obstacles to come while on this path, but, I have seen that that darkness only lasts for a short while and then, when the light breaks through and I have made it through that time, the things God has in store for me is more than I had ever imagined. So, like Paul, I stay on the path… I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. Philippians 3:14 – DeShawne