Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Taking Steps

Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
May 20, 2008

In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps. -Proverbs 16:9 NIV

Inside each of us are our dreams, hopes, desires and wishes. I love talking to little children about their dreams. They are so enthusiastic when they share their thoughts. There is a fresh innocence to their words that tumble so freely from their hearts. This time of year, the high school seniors are preparing for graduation as a new path unfolds in front of them. Many decisions await them about how to pursue their dreams and what steps to take. Graduating college students are ready to put their education to use as they seek their place in the world. But dreams aren’t just for the young. Changing careers, lifestyles or even moving from one place to another are all part of the process of redesigning ones’ life. But whatever it is that we feel we are “called” to do or pursue, we must always check with God first.

It is really His Plan for us that we should be following rather than going out on our own. I know this for sure. If we are operating within His Plan, His Umbrella of Protection, then we are on the right path. We may stumble and fall, we may even fail, but it is with the knowledge that sometimes God takes us down certain roads to build up our faith, to humble or to strengthen us before we can go further. He is constantly encouraging and teaching us through the daily experiences we encounter. But, what if nothing is happening? Maybe we don’t know if we are in God’s Plan or not. In fact, we may have put our dreams on hold for so long, we have given up. That is when we take those first steps. Martin Luther King, Jr. is quoted as saying, “Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.” It is important to follow up our hopes and dreams with action. We can trust God to open the doors for us if we are obedient and walking a godly path. He will surely close doors for us and redirect us if we get off course. It is as if He is taking us by the hand. We just have to trust Him.

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