In His Shadow

Thursday, September 21st, 2023

Today I am going to look at one scripture in two different versions and then write a prayer that the Lord is putting on my heart. The scripture is Proverbs 20:24 (NKJV):

24 A man’s steps are of the Lord; How then can a man understand his own way?

This scripture stood out to me in my morning reading and I couldn’t help but notice that 2024 is the year we will soon be rolling (or speeding rapidly) into. Let’s look closer at a couple of the words in the original Hebrew. In Strong’s, the word “understand” means to separate mentally (or distinguish). The words “his own way” in Strong’s means a road (as trodden); figuratively, a course of life or mode of action. If we are of the Lord then, how can we separate mentally or distinguish the road we walk on or our modes of action from those of the Lord? I love this picture. I see the Lord holding us and leading us in such a way that others don’t see our footsteps or any self-identifying motive in us. All they see is the Lord and what He is doing.

This is where I desire to be, although I acknowledge I am certainly not there yet. Sometimes I get so wrapped up in trying to feed my flesh. I know it’s not what I am called to do, but sometimes I just get so tired or hurt or lonely that my flesh steps in to try to fill the void. I end up choosing slumber over my time with the Lord, letting my emotions take me to dangerous mental habitations or looking to people or places that will make me feel valued. The enemy loves when people can see us instead of the Lord. He wants us focused on ourselves. He wants us looking to fill our void with anything but God. He tells us we deserve extra sleep or praise from man or whatever cheap fix might take our hurt away. All he ever wants to do is get our eyes off God and onto ourselves. He doesn’t really care the method or the reason he just wants to pull us away enough so that others no longer see God in us. Instead, they see our hands, our feet, our mind, or our heart. Then he uses our deficiencies in these places to cause us even more pain and pull us even farther from the hands of our heavenly Father. From that place, others can then distinguish our course of life from the Lord’s, and we are no longer truly following Him. Let’s look at this scripture in The Passion Translation. Proverbs 20:24 says:

24 It is the Lord who directs your life, for each step you take is ordained by God to bring you closer to your destiny. So much of your life, then, remains a mystery!

Let’s let life be an adventure-filled mystery. Let’s stop letting the enemy tell us we deserve anything or that he can give us anything better than God can. If we serve these thoughts, we have stepped outside of God’s destiny for us.

Final Thoughts…

I’m going to pray this scripture over us now. Lord, we agree with this scripture that says you direct our steps. We repent for all the times we have tried to step out on our own. We close any doors we have opened to the enemy in the process. We want to be so immersed in and dependent on You that others see no evidence of us. We truly desire that none of our actions, thoughts or words are in anyway distinguishable from Yours. Not that we are at all capable of out-performing or out-thinking You, but that we are so surrendered to You that our thoughts and actions reflect You and You alone. Forgive us for trying to figure out Your plans, blame You for the ones that didn’t work or praise ourselves for the ones that did. Though we will never fully understand the hows and whys of Your ways, help us to trust You anyway. Take our worries and send them over the cliff. We know we will never be perfect but shine Your light on any part of us that starts to come out from under Your shadow. In Your grace don’t let us stay there for long. Silence the accuser that tries to tell us we have any rights or claims to anything in this world. If it’s not what You want for us, we don’t want it. If it’s not heading in the direction You want us to go, we don’t want to go there. If it’s pulling us out of Your perfect timing help us to be still and wait. Help us to be okay with not knowing. We trust the One that does and that is all that matters.