One Step at a Time

The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.”  Philippians 4:9

A few nights ago I received a call from a new friend who was looking for some advice.  After talking about her desire to make more healthy food choices for her family, I could hear in her voice that she was feeling a bit overwhelmed by the process ahead.  As I prayed to find the words to keep encouraging this friend in the direction I knew God was taking her I felt she needed a bit of a perspective change about where she was headed.   I encouraged her by saying, “You know you only need to start with one step in the right direction.   You do not need to completely overhaul your diet starting tomorrow.”  To that she responded, “You are right.  That makes it sound so much easier.  Thanks.”

Often times in life we need a reminder that good things do not happen in large leaps, but rather through disciplined little steps.  In our society where “fast” and “easy” rule our way of thinking, the ways of God that move slowly and methodically seem old fashioned and illogical. But, real change happens over time as we allow ourselves the ability to be changed from the inside out.  Neil T Anderson, the author of Stomping Out Depression for Teens, makes a statement very much in line with how we must act if we desire real and lasting change in our lives.  He states,   “…we do not feel our way into good behavior, we behave our way into a good feeling.  If we wait until we feel like doing what is right, we will likely never do it.”  

I have come to the realization, after many instances in which God has worked in my life that He desires for me to just take one small step at a time with Him.  He does not ask that I understand any of the steps or that I be in the right mood to take the next step He is asking, but rather just to trust and have faith that each little step He directs will add up to something bigger.  And, when I have been faithful (notice I said “when”) I have always been able to look back and see how all of those small steps have added up to a something greater than I could have made by putting them all together myself – that is just the way God works.

I guess my example above is in line with what Jesus meant when He said to His disciples, “If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.” (John 13:17)  God has set certain tasks ahead of each of us today.  If the task ahead of you looks too big to conquer, pray for God to show you a small step you can take in the right direction.  It is then up to you to move your foot and take the step, no matter how enthusiastic you feel about moving in the way God has shown you.   In doing so, you will find your life to be filled with the blessings God has planned for you.

Plus take heart and remember, God does not show you the way to go and then abandon you to keep moving ahead on your own.  No, instead He promises in His word, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5b)  Going ahead with what may seem difficult today is the only way to get to the blessings and companionship God has already promised you.  So, what are you waiting for?  Take that first step and see where God puts your foot once you make the choice to move ahead.


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