THE DIRECTOR OF OUR WAY
I know, O LORD, that a mans life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps.
Among the many wonders of the Holy Scriptures is their ability frequently to compress into a sentence truth so vast, so complex, as to require a whole shelf of books to expound.
Even a single phrase may glow with a light like that of the ancient pillar of fire and its shining may illuminate the intellectual landscape for miles around.
An example is found in Jeremiah 10:23. After the Lord had spoken of the vanity of idols and had set in contrast to the gods of the heathen the glory of the living God, the King of Eternity, the prophet responded in an inspired exclamation that very well states the whole problem of humankind: O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.
The prophet here turns to a figure of speech, one which appears in the Scriptures so frequently that it is not easy to remember that it is but a figure. Man is seen as a traveler making his difficult way from a past he can but imperfectly recollect into a future about which he knows nothing. And he cannot stay, but must each morning strike his moving tent and journey on toward-and there is the heavy problem-toward what?
It is not for us to direct our steps but how often we try. Only God knows the way ahead. The Good Shepherd leads if we will but follow.
It is for You to direct my steps. Today, Good Shepherd, lead me and I will follow.