God's Words For US
by Cecelia Lester
As God’s children, we are led by Him as we walk through each day. The Israelites followed Moses and later Joshua, under the Lord’s leading, into the land promised them by Father God.
“By day the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light so they could travel by day or night. Neither the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night left them.” Exodus 13:20-21 (NIV)
Isn’t it like God to plan for everything? In this passage, God provided a way for the people of Israel to travel during the day or the night. This is a new thought for me. As I take this all in, I remember the verse where Moses tells Joshua that God “will go before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:8 (NIV) Moses could share this with Joshua because he had experienced God’s presence as he led his nation’s people through the wilderness.
Have we been through dark times when we had to rely upon the Lord for guidance? Our family has; our church family has; anyone who claims Christ has also. When my sister-in-law lay in ICU at a trauma hospital, all I could ask God for was what was best for her. When my husband, less than two months later, had a complication after surgery that could have taken his life I had to be strong and insist that he listen to the medical team and reenter the hospital. The next day, he underwent a second surgery for the same issue.
Sometimes, God leads us along certain paths for reasons of His own. We might not know at the time what His reasons are. All we can do is trust Him and follow where He takes us.
God leads us in ways we might not choose to go. One of my friends has been on a path that she never expected to go down. She and her family have had not just one experience along this unfamiliar path, but two—almost simultaneously.
When we pass someone on the street, or meet a person at church, we don’t know what that person has been through or what’s on their heart. We have to ask God to lead him or her and those close to them. Also, our prayers for the individuals may include asking God to wrap His arms of love around them and those near them and whisper words of comfort or healing and love into their ears.
When we live for God, we never quite know where or how He will lead us. All we know is if we “. . . acknowledge him, he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:6 (NIV)
In Jeremiah’s prophecy to the exiles, he spoke God’s words. What God spoke through His prophet resonates in our hearts today. “For, I know the plans I have for you, plans
to prosper you and give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) The verse before this message tells the people they will be exiled in Babylon for seventy years. My own personal thought on this prophecy is that God knew the people would be disheartened to hear of such a long time in a foreign land. As I read the eleventh verse, I hear God telling His people that all things are under His control and He has their best interests in mind. He will lead them according to His desire for His Kingdom.
At church recently we sang a hymn that tells me what I must do. Its title speaks volumes, “Where He Leads Me, I Will Follow.” As we live in these days of uncertainty, we should take time to study and live outthe words of this famous hymn.
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Cecelia Lester has been serious about her writing for two decades..
She composes Christian essays and posts them to her blog quietspirit-followingmyking.blogspot.com/
She has served in a faith-based organization, Grace In Action by writing two newsletters and searching for possible grants.
In July 2017, she published her first book, 'Times of Trouble Bring Rays of Joy.'
She and her husband of 52 years live in central Indiana. They have one grown son.
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