The Paths of God
"All the paths of the LORD are mercy and truth — unto such as keep His covenant and His testimonies." (Psalm 25:10)
"All the paths." It is no small effort of faith to say so, when blessings are blighted, and schemes crossed, and fellow-pilgrims, (it may be beloved spouses in our spiritual joys) are mysteriously removed, to say, "All — ALL is mercy! All — ALL is well!" They are "the paths of the Lord" — His choosing; and, be assured, He will "lead His people by a right way."
It may not be the way of their own selecting. It may be the very last path they would have chosen. But when He leads His sheep, "He goes before them." The Shepherd portions off our pasture-ground. He guides the footsteps of the flock. He will lead them by no rougher way — than He sees needful. Does a human father give his child his own way? If he did — it would be his ruin! Will God surrender us to our own truant wills — which are often bent on wandering farthest from Him? No! He knows us better! He loves us better!
Believer, it is the loftiest triumph and prerogative of faith, to have no way — no path of your own — but with childlike simplicity and reliance to say, "Teach me Your paths. Lead me however and wherever You please. Let it be through the darkest, loneliest, thorniest way — only let it bring me nearer Yourself!"
Would that we could keep our eye not so much on the path — as on the bright gate, which terminates it. When standing at that luminous portal, we shall trace, with adoring wonder, the way in which our God has led us; discerning the "need be" of every teardrop! And to the question, "Is it well?" to which often on earth we gave an evasive answer — we will be ready with an unhesitating reply, "It is well!" What a light will then be flashed on these three often mysterious words, "God is love!" Then, at last, shall we be able to add the joyful comment, "We have known and believed the love which God has to us!"
Meanwhile, Reader! if you are treading a path of sorrow, consider, as an encouragement, that your Lord and Master trod the same before you. Behold, as He toiled on His blood-stained journey, how submission to the Divine will formed the secret of His support. "Yes, Father, because this was Your good pleasure!" "Not My will — but may Your will be done!" The True David was strengthened with what sustained His typical ancestor in a dark and trying hour: "O Lord, You are my God!"
Believer, if it is your God in covenant who is leading you — then what more can you require? "His Ways are truth and judgment." He will guide you by His counsel, while you live — and afterward receive you into glory! My God! if such is the design of Your dealings and discipline, "I will both lie down and sleep in peace, for You alone, O Lord, make me live in safety!" (Psalm 4:8).
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