Cover 2015-11-22

Ron Writes

How are Your Feet?

Last Wednesday, the text was 2 Samuel 22:34, “He makes my feet like hinds' feet” (cf. Psalm 18:33). Pictures were shown of the amazing climbing ability of the mountain goats in the wilderness of Palestine. David would have been familiar with the deer and other animals that live on these jagged cliffs. The lesson was a good one. God doesn’t change the terrain, but instead he gives us the ability to climb the steep mountains of our lives. There are some circumstances and situations in our lives that aren’t going to change. Rather than praying for God to change our struggle, we should be praying for “feet” to climb the obstacles of life.

Paul wrote, “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it” (1 Cor. 10:13). God doesn’t remove the trials and temptations of our lives, but he does give us the strength to “endure it.”

Rather than whining and complaining about our struggles, James admonishes us to consider it “all joy” (Jm. 1:2ff). He doesn’t tell us to pray that our trials will be removed, but rather to have such an attitude toward our trials that will make us stronger. It will produce in us “endurance.” It will make us “complete,” “lacking in nothing.”

Suffering is the backdrop of 1 Peter, it’s mentioned in every single chapter. He tells us not to be “surprised” by our ordeals, “as though some strange thing were happening to you” (1 Pet. 4:12). But the theme of his message is “onward.” We move forward not because our problems have been removed, but because by God’s strength we endure it and grow. There’s nothing in our lives that we can’t overcome with God’s strength and help! We can wake up each day and proclaim, “God and I can conquer anything!”

The bumps of life are what we climb on to get stronger. As Ray Vanderlaan said, we should be thinking about “feet.” As we face various trials and struggles, our prayer shouldn’t be for God to remove them, but for God to give us the “feet” or the strength to overcome them. Our prayer is that God will give us the feet to climb the steep cliffs of life. And as we do, let’s not forget to look around to see if there are those we might encourage to keep on climbing. Let’s not forget to reach back and give a helping hand to those weak from the struggle. Praise God for giving us “hinds’ feet!”