About 10 years ago, we went on a vacation where we rented an RV and went up into the mountains and spent time in Colorado. It was amazing. We loved it, and we did a lot of hiking. But there’s one particular hike that we went on that I remember towards the end of the trip. We were looking for a train wreck, but we could not find the entrance to the trail, and we would go around and around and the path was just not straight at all. At one point I think we found the entrance, but it was after about an hour and a half of looking. So we walked down the trail and then ended up coming back at it. It’s just kind of the way it is with hiking sometimes. You don’t know what the path is ahead. And sometimes you have to stop. Sometimes you have to just say, “You know what, I’m just going to stop here.”
Today is just such a hard time because we’re all trying to look forward to our paths. We’re all trying to say, “Hey, what’s next? What’s going on? What happens now?” And the path ahead of us is just crooked. We don’t know what direction we’re going. We’re not quite sure what’s around the next bend. We’re not even sure if we’re on the right path sometimes.
This really hit home for me yesterday when I got a call from our son, Clayton, who is up at Purdue in college. There are some frustrating things going on for him. Not many of the classes are in person–a lot of them are virtual. It’s hard to get involved in clubs, and it’s just harder to do things. This is not the freshman college experience he expected. Life is not going the way that we expected it to right now.
So what do we do when we’re stuck on a path, but we don’t know which way to go, or we feel completely stuck? Today’s scripture speaks to this. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will make your path straight.”
So, if we’re stuck on crooked paths, which many of us are today, what does it say? It says, well, first we have to trust in the Lord with all your heart. And then the second piece goes along with it is lean not on your own understanding.
So, can you trust His understanding?
Can we trust Him that He’s got our best interests at heart?
I don’t know what’s next. I don’t know what’s ahead. But I do know that God understands. So I’m not going to lean on my own understanding. I’m going to trust God for what He’s doing in my life, and know that if I do trust Him, He will make my path straight.
Can we do that today? Can we just take a step back and surrender and say, “You know what? I don’t know what’s going to occur. I don’t know what’s going to happen. But I’m going to lean on Him, and I’m going to trust in His understanding and then just let Him lay out the path before me.”
We’ve got one life to make a difference. One life to really, truly create the transformation we want to see. Here’s what I know: it’s not going to happen if we keep trying to force our way. It is going to come in places of surrender, because the best path ahead for us is God’s path, even if the path is crooked and we can’t see it, because to God, the path is straight, because He knows exactly where He’s taking us and what He’s doing. He will make our paths straight.