“We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps”—Proverbs 16:9 (NLT).
Using a step counter to monitor the miles I walk each week helps me to stay on track with my plans to stay healthy. To log 25 miles a week, I must walk 50,000 steps from Monday morning to the following Sunday evening.
I never realized how many steps I logged each day doing the following: cleaning the house, taking a break from writing to add a load of laundry to the washer and then the dryer, or walking out to get my mail. Numerous other household chores add to the steps I accumulate each day.
My miles also add up with the steps I take each time I go for a walk through my lakeside neighborhood. Weather permitting, I usually log another four to six thousand steps outside daily.
Reaching my Goals
Although I strive to walk 50,000 steps a week, I don’t always reach my goal. Why? Let’s just say God has a way of disrupting my carefully laid plans.
In the past, when my daily routine was interrupted, I became frustrated. I lived by a list, enjoying the thrill of checking off each accomplishment. But I’ve learned that living by a list of to-do’s is not God’s plan for my life.
Since I released my need to be in control of my life, God has redirected my steps many times. The places He’s led me and the people I’ve met along the way are far more interesting than those pesky items on my to-do list.
Life-Changing Steps Followed
When I fully surrendered my life to Jesus, life-changing steps followed. As my faith has grown, so has my desire to serve Him, to let Him lead me on the path He has chosen for me. Not the path of least resistance, but a challenging path often requiring me to cling to the hem of His garment.
I never dreamed I’d move to a new community—where I could count on one hand the number of people I knew—after I gave up my 30-year teaching career in 2005. However, when I followed in His steps, Jesus began to open doors I couldn’t on my own, leading to a new life chapter.
My writing and speaking ministries have given me opportunities to share and encourage other women as they, too, navigate the journey God has planned for them. Even when there were those who doubted I’d made the right decision to leave my teaching career, I’ve never once looked back.
Following in His Steps
What would you have done if Jesus had approached you on the shores of the Sea of Galilee and asked you to drop everything and follow Him? What might following in His steps mean? How many steps would you log? Remember, Jesus walked everywhere
According to Professor of Theology Douglas S. Winnail, “To make the customary three trips to Jerusalem each year to keep the Holy Days (Passover, Pentecost and the fall festivals (Leviticus 23; Luke 2:41-42), Jesus would have walked about 150 miles round-trip on each occasion. Just to keep the Holy Days, Jesus would have walked in excess of 450 miles each year. When you consider that He probably walked a mile or more a day during the rest of the year, it is not hard to see that Jesus could have easily walked more than 1,000 miles every year.”
The miles racked up would be on dusty roads. There would be no convenience stores along the way to stop for sustenance or a restroom break. It wasn’t a glamorous life.
You Can’t Follow Halfheartedly
“Following Christ isn’t something that can be done halfheartedly or on the side,” says Francis Chan, preacher. “It is not a label we can display when it is useful. It must be central to everything we do and are.”
Commitment to Christ’s steps requires us to walk away from the things of this world. It’s not easy. It requires a daily dying to self. It means rearranging our priorities. A letting go of our to-do lists.
Fully committing to Him means being prepared to let God interrupt your day. There’s no need to count your steps. Just follow.
I always love hearing from my readers. Please feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts, or visit my blog for more inspiration at www.carolaround.com. If you need a speaker or workshop leader, you can contact me at the above e-mail or through my website. I’d be delighted to hear from you.
Photo credit: Adrianna Calvo