Over time, time carved out with my God has become more and more a part of my daily life. I’ve noticed that it is the difference between beginning the day with crazy anxiety, and peace. It’s the difference between flapping around, worrying about all the things I need to worry about, and giving it to God, knowing that He has got it – and me – sorted. At the moment, my go-to routine is to get up, leave the house; go and find a coffee somewhere, preferably with a comfy chair, read something from my Bible (more on how I do this another time), soak that up for a bit and then chat to God about it, and about my life, and the silly little things that I don’t think he should care about, and yet of course he does.
A few weeks ago I was chatting away and a beautiful picture wove itself together at the front of my mind; so clear that I knew it was from Him, and it was such a beautiful comfort and encouragement to me, that I hope it will encourage you, too.
It was a beautiful river on a summers day, winding through a forest; and stepping stones, placed here and there in this part of the water. There was a little kid playing in the river, jumping from one to the other, laughing and splashing. They would jump onto one, steady and land there for as long as it took to be ready to jump onto the next one; and then, with a big leap, they would hop on to the next stone. Sometimes it looked like they might not make it – but there was a Dad on the scene – playing the game with their kid, he would show them how to get from one stone to the next, give them the pep talk and tell them how much the could do it, with a big smile on his face, and then he would wait by the next stone, ready to catch his kid if they overshot the jump. The Dad was setting up the stones as he went along; tossing them into the water like Frisbees, the perfect distance for his child to jump on to.
Here’s the thing: He never sets us up to fail, he never asks us to jump onto something that he knows we’re not going to make; but we need to make the jump, safe in the knowledge that he’s carrying us. Sometimes, when the next stone seems too far away, we just need to look over and see him right there next to us, cheering us on.
“I will give you every place that you will set your foot” (Joshua 1:3)