For the land, whither thou go in to possess it, is not as the land of Egypt, from whence ye came out.... But the land, whither ye go to possess it, is a land of hills and valleys, and drinketh water of the rain of heaven: A land which the Lord thy God cares for ... Deuteronomy 11:10-12
I like to walk where the water has run. Some years ago, my morning exercise drew me into dry desert washes where illusions of shade offered a welcome reprieve from the climbing sun that insists upon broiling our summer days. I enjoyed the quiet of the small ravines and felt less vulnerable than while exposed on the unending dusty roads, where one can spot a lone figure from miles away.
I coddled a tricky hip back then, and it would occasionally rebel against the deep rock-strewn sandy soil, made bumpy by the splayed imprints from cows, coyotes, and quail that forage for their meals by kicking up the dirt at the gully floor. I therefore opted to follow the run-offs, where the sand was smooth and firm from recent monsoons, yet soft enough to cushion the impact to aging joints.
When I trudge through this bumpy land called life, I find that by seeking smoother places - where the water of heaven runs - I lessen the pain wrought by going my own way. Until I stepped out of captivity to the forging of my own path and began to follow the way of the Living Water, Jesus, I paid a high price, both spiritually and physically. Now, when I elect to place my feet where He has trod, I walk in freedom from the hurt caused from tripping over the rocks. How do I know where to place my feet? The Bible tells me. It does. With every step I take, it shows me precisely where to find the Living Water of Jesus Christ.
I must keep my senses tuned, however, since seasons change from the fresh excitement of springtime that carries me into arid summer months of high temperatures and growing weariness. Now I must jealously guard my walk with Christ, lest my spirit yield to the seeming drought.
October in the desert hails glorious. Although its invigorating newness offers a refreshing surge of commitment to our intriguing high desert, beware of poisonous snakes that move stealthily from under rocks and brush. They will strike if we come too close, and so will Satan and his cohorts, enemies to God and to those who follow Jesus. Yes, they will lie patiently in wait for seasons of opportunity. I must keep wary then to avoid the bite. Which path shall I choose to follow today, the way of God, or the way of me? How shall I know where to put my feet? Shall I consult with God's own Word, the Holy Bible, to find the answer?
Lord, today I choose to walk where the water runs, for it's your Living Water, Jesus, who makes my way smoother and safer with each passing season. I pray for vigilance in the face of the enemy that lurks in hidden places and for the sense to watch where to put my feet.
Adapted from "Finding the Flowers in a Prickly World." You may email Ms. Wilson by visiting www.pensepublishing.com.