Crossing the Bridge

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my loving eye on you. Psalm 32:8 NIV

When I was about fourteen our parents often took my younger sister and I on day trips to the museums in New York. Like the average young boy I was hoping to see dinosaurs , but my step-father decided it was a better education to trudge through the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim or anyplace filled with paintings. One day after bringing us over to the Pratt Institute of Art in Brooklyn they decided to head back to Manhattan for lunch. At first I could hear mom say, “Look, there’s the Empire State building, just head that way and we’ll get there!” So, my step-dad headed through downtown Brooklyn towards the landmark which they could see in the distance. I don’t recall much except hearing him say, “I’m not going to stop and ask for directions. They always tell me to turn around and go the other way!” So they just kept driving, always keeping what was then the tallest skyscraper in New York in view. Unfortunately, when we came to the river our parents suddenly realized that they had forgotten they needed to cross a bridge!

Life is often like that. We are pretty sure we know where we need to be going and how to get there but we have forgotten that we need to cross God’s bridge. In Psalm 32, David shares with us how God had helped him out of the very lost part of his life, when he had sinned by having an affair with Bathsheba. But before he could receive God’s promise, David had to stop and ask directions – an act we call repentance. We often delay this as long as possible, because we know that, just like my step-dad, we will be told to turn around and go in the opposite direction.

But, if we will just humble ourselves and admit we are going the wrong way, God has a wonderful promise. First, He says that He will instruct us – In other words He will open His GPS app, called the Bible, and show us the way to the bridge. Next, God promises to teach us. In other words He gives step by step directions at every turn. But the best part comes at the end of the verse when He promises is to guide us with His eye. What an amazing Savior we serve. He is watching right now, wondering what we will do when we finally realize we need to find the bridge! He is always waiting for us to stop and ask for His help and forgiveness. When we do this, He promises that He will lovingly keep His eye on us by coming down, sitting next to us and riding alongside all the way across the river!

When Our Lord Leads the Way

 
When Our Lord Leads the Way

 In the Fall with the frost
 Flocks of birds Start to form
 Preparing to fly
 Before Winter’s storms
  
 Though the path of their flight
 Is unseen and unclear
 Their heavenly controller 
Plots their course every year
 And if those birds know 
Which direction to stay
 How much more we 
When our Lord leads the way

When Our Lord Leads the Way
by Peter Caligiuri Copyright 2021
All rights reserved
 
 

Even the stork in the heavens
    knows her times,
and the turtledove, swallow, and crane
    keep the time of their coming,
but my people know not
    the rules of the Lord. Jeremiah 8:7 ESV

The Pathway to the Barn

Thy word is lamp unto my feet and a light to my path. Psalm 119:105

When I was a teenager I lived for a few years on a farm in Southern Missouri. Each of us had our own chores and mine was to milk the cow. It would have been far easier to run across the road to the milk barn when it was light out, but in order to be ready to leave for work on time, I needed to get out of my nice warm bed and get started by 4:45. If the moon was full, it wasn’t hard to see and I could easily pick my way up the familiar path. But on dark moonless mornings, though I knew the way by heart, I needed the beam from my flashlight to find where to place my feet for each step.

Now fifty years later, I am still getting up long before daybreak but the pathway of 2021 feels far darker than any of those walks to the barn. Our own family’s issues, the ever changing national health crisis along with my own personal struggles loom on the horizon feeling like the shadows of a massive mountain range. Fears and doubts, decisions and demands lie waiting to be confronted, decided and met full on. But there is hope because God has given us a promise that He will light the path. We may not see well enough to run ahead, but His word will show us the way to take the next step. Then, even more amazingly He adds the even greater promise that He will not only light our path but that He will walk with us on it ,step by step, all the way to the barn.

God bless you each of you and Happy New Year. May you find the next step that He has reserved for you in this year that lies ahead!