Lord, Give me the Narrow Road!!!
“We all want progress, but if you’re on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive.” – CS Lewis
“Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens.” – JRR Tolkien
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
– Matthew 7:13-14
Struggles & restlessness, like a deep blinding fog, have followed me this year. It is complicated, because for the most part it has been a really good year. There has been a lot of promise. A wonderful vacation, time spent with friends & family. I mean, I got to see Andrew Peterson twice this year. But, I think I had grown accustomed to not being able to see my hand in front of my face. There was a comforting safety enfolded in the dense fog. I could hear God, but not see His footsteps. No matter how He wooed me I kept falling behind, losing Him.
A dear friend asked, “Why don’t we take the road less travelled?” I don’t think it is because the wide road looks more adventurous. In fact, I think we often don’t take the narrow road because it looks far too wild. There is danger and uncertainty, great cavernous ditches to cross, waterfalls, dangerous creatures set to devour, mountains to climb, & terrible storms to endure. The wide road offers safety, prosperity, ease, & a comfortable stagnation that we like. We are not creatures of change. God knew this when He designed us. He knew that change would cause fear &, His hope, was that fear would cause us to draw near to Him. He knows our hearts. He knows what we need opposed to what we want. We think we know better, but He knows best!
There has been a situation I have been avoiding. I just, frankly, am tired of it. I don’t want to deal with this situation, large in part, because I feel I have caused this scenario to get where it is. Everyone is saying, “Defend yourself! Stick up for yourself! You have to be strong!” However, confrontation has never been my strong suit. I would have been the perfect hippie; can’t we just love one another. I have struggled to gain that Spiritual Backbone I so desperately want. In my conversations with God over this situation He has been gently reminding me that He is my defender.
“As birds flying, so will the Lord of hosts defend Jerusalem; defending also he will deliver it; and passing over he will preserve it.” – Isaiah 31:5
“A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy habitation.” – Psalm 68:5
“Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. – Romans 12:19
Christ rarely defended Himself, however he often defended the Harlot, the Adulterer, the Widow, & the poor. This doesn’t mean I shouldn’t let a fellow believer know when they have wronged me. However, I want to be a woman above reproach. There is a time & place & a seeking of obedience unto the Lord.
This situation has caused me to think a lot about my life. My gentleness & desire to give myself freely are strengths that God has given me. These attributes become hindrances when I try to people please & won’t speak up because I am afraid I will hurt someone’s feelings.
I both like & dislike that I’m an introvert & awkward at times. I loathe that I’m a worrier. I worry about worrying. I hate that I can’t put things to rest.
There is a lot of work that needs to be done in 2013. I am thankful that God doesn’t give up on me. He gives me more time. He continues to bring these uncomfortable situations around to make me stronger. He truly cares more about my character than my comfort.
This year I don’t want the easy road. I want the narrow. I want the difficult. I want the adventure. We were born for it. It is why JRR Tolkien & CS Lewis resonates with us. It is why the day to day trials can weight us to the floor.
I want to find that place where JOY & SORROW meet. I want adventure. My desire & hope is that I will unbind the chains that have bound my love, HIS LOVE, & let it soar!!!
Work in my heart! Remove the fog from my eyes. Woo me into the wilderness where you will speak tenderly to me. Remind me of my first love. Protect me from my foes, & those so-called friends. Take me on an adventure. Challenge me. Move or move me. I no longer take for granted this gift of life. Thank you for your provision, your love, & your endless guidance. I am yours, use me as you see fit.