The God Who Goes Before
There are a lot of unknowns in life aren't there? Circumstances often bring us to a place where we are waiting on an outcome that is unknown to us and one we have little control over.
So imagine my pleasant surprise when recently God has been bringing a different part of his character to light in my life. Reading through the Bible I've been finding a theme when it comes to who God is and what He does. Reading through the Bible we see that the God we follow is not only Lord, Saviour, or Jehovah-Jeriah, but He is also the God who goes before.
"And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed." (Deuteronomy 31:8)
"I saw the Lord always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken." (Acts 2:25)
"I will go before you and make crooked places straight; I will break in pieces the gates of bronze and cut the bars of iron. I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that I, the Lord, who calls you by your name, am the God of Israel." (Isaiah 45:2-3)
Like a shepherd who walks before his flock to make sure the land for them is safe, God walks before of His children to scout out the land and lead us in the right direction. It doesn't matter how many unknowns we have ahead of us, He goes before.
We see this in Deuteronomy chapter 9. The Israelites were about to cross into a land with armies and people who were much greater than they were. Facing off in a war against a foe you know is stronger than you is not a good place to be in. That would be like picking a street fight with
professional boxer- not a good idea unless your idea of a good time is being beaten up pretty badly or even killed.
So the Israelites were facing a very scary situation. They were purposefully walking into a fight that they couldn't win on their own, but they could do so with confidence because they knew one thing- they were following the God who went before.
"But the Lord your God will cross over ahead of you like a devouring fire to destroy them. He will subdue them so that you will quickly conquer them and drive them out, just as the Lord promised." (Deuteronomy 9:3)
And we see that very thing happen as the people of Israel walk in faith behind the God who goes before and He faithfully mets them in that place with a victory.
So what land are you needing to cross into? You can walk in with confidence knowing that you follow the God who goes before.
He goes before you into the doctors office.
He goes before you into the job interview.
He goes before you into the courtroom.
He goes before you into the church meeting.
No matter where you find yourself in life, you're following the footsteps of someone who walks ahead. It's kind of like what would happen and I was a child and we'd go to scout out the perfect Christmas tree. We'd walk through deep snow often in an area that was very unfamiliar, but that was never a cause for concern for two reasons. First off, we were following my Mom who knew where she was going and secondly we were walking in her very footsteps. Instead of breaking our own trail and growing weary and tired in the process, we were stepping exactly where she had once stood, confirming we were on the right path and easing the load.
The same goes for you and I as we journey through our lives. We are not breaking our own trail, rather we're following in the footsteps of the very Man who lived on earth Himself for 33 years just so He would know what it was like. You see, Jesus didn't have to stay on earth that long in order to accomplish His purpose of salvation. He could have given His life at age 12 or 16 or 21. But instead He choose to hang around for many more years; maybe reason being so that He would know what it's like and He'd be equipped to lead the way.
No matter where you find yourself in life. No matter how thick the fog may seem and no matter how lost you might feel, remember that you are not alone. God is with you and as long as you follow Him step by step, He'll lead you to where you need to go.
This territory of your life that may seem so foreign to you is known by God inside out. He's not leading you in this direction by chance. He sees what's beyond the fog and He's leading you down roads that are not only going to take you to exactly where you need to be, but are also going to make you the kind of person He desires as you journey.
You are not alone. You are following the God who goes before.
Excerpt from the book, Closed Doors by Kristen McNulty.
Reprint rights available on request. Email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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