Crisp air floated around me as wisps of deep-green grass bowed, straightened, then bowed again. Shadows drew back to the base of the mountain as the sun continued its ascent.
A bird dove from the tip of a tree and landed like a swirling feather, dipped its beak, and pulled. Moments later, it soared back to the treetop. Some babies would enjoy breakfast soon.
My husband and I turned toward a worn path on our hike. Each step took us farther from the beauty of the mountain, away from our car, down the road, and into the lane of trees. Tinder, fallen pine needles, and small stones blanketed the trail.
Step after step we talked about the beauty around us, life’s challenges, and those we loved and missed. I filled my lungs with clean, warm air.
As the trail began to grow busier, we turned our steps toward a narrower footpath. No longer could we walk side-by-side so I took the lead. Conversation dropped off with each new step. But I knew my husband was there. I could hear his footfall when we came to an area where the narrow route hardened.
Whether we spoke or not, whether we walked side by side or not, whether we held hands or not, I knew he was there. And I knew if anything dangerous presented itself, together we could handle it.
There were a few times, on the trek through the woods, that the path grew rougher. My husband warned me to take careful steps over an unstable area. But I had to make a decision to take his counsel or not. I did and, thankfully, didn’t end up stuck in a hole.
That’s what being in any kind of relationship is about. Sharing presence, time, conversation, wisdom, and confidence.
My husband and I walk through life together because that’s what we’ve chosen. But we made another choice also.
We don’t walk together alone. We walk with Another who remains closer than either of us could be to each other.
This Other is even more present to share time and to converse with. He is the one who created peace and gives it as a gift in any and all situations. He is the Builder of confidence and the Creator of joy.
Father God was as present with us on our hike as we were with each other. Just as I knew my husband walked behind me on the narrow path, I know God walks in front of me, beside me, behind me, and all around me. At times He carries me.
And on our hike, God was there helping to take the right steps.
God is always whispering, prodding, pointing, and guiding. Sometimes, those directives are very clear and loud. But occasionally, there are moments when the wisdom comes like the breeze through the wild grass.
No matter how perilous or secure the circumstance, I still must choose whether to rely on His steadfastness and omniscience or go my own way.
On the walk, I occasionally saw my husband’s shadow off to the side as the direction of the path changed. I couldn’t see him but knew he was there.
In the same way, as I pay close attention and listen attentively, I will find proof of God’s presence in all areas of my life. And when I can’t, I trust His word which says He is always with me no matter the situation.
No matter how rough life gets around us today, I hope this brings you as much peace as it does me. He is with us. He is near. Today, let’s sink into His presence.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 ESV