Something I wrote last year…
When I was little, walking in the dark at my church’s family camp was scary. It was about the scariest thing ever. All day I would be fine outside, playing anywhere and walking down the open paths by myself, but as soon as dark crept over those lovely cheerful paths the once peaceful young mind of mine would go wild with imagining; trying to fill in all the blanks of the dark.
I’d walk along the short 200 yards from the lodge to the bathhouse peering through the dim beam of my flashlight trying to see as much as I possibly could. I would enlist my imagination and it and I would fill those dark places with bears and wolves and big scary deer. The bushes would rustle and every little place of extra darkness would cause my heart to race.
To this day I am still very freaked out about meeting bears and other unfriendlies in the woods ( I even worry about the friendly things sometimes), but lately I’ve realized that my utter panic has subsided and been replaced with a general sense extra-alertness. Instead of fits of panic I am able to walk calmly (although admittedly I do sometimes get startled and might even freak out at times still. possibly).
The tactic which seems to work best is to keep my head down; focus on the next step. I don’t waste my energy wondering about all that could be out there, I worry instead about what is there; right in front of me. I focus the beam of my flashlight where it is able to shine the brightest – about three feet in front of me.
“Thy word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105
God will light up our path. He promises us a lamp, not a helicopter with a spotlight, not daylight. A lamp. A source that forces us to trust and only provides enough light to see a few steps ahead.
Instead of focusing on the outer unknown areas, the way to live in the peace of God is to take our steps in that lit-up three feet. One step at a time. God will only show us the next step and we won’t get to know the next step until we take the one that’s right in front of us.
Go as He leads.
One step at a time.
Don’t be afraid of or focus on the unknown.
Focus on that known step until one more step is shown.