Wisdom in Winter – Day 7 – Footsteps

Read

Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.
Proverbs 16:3

Reflect

On my wall I have a picture of a hamster running on a wheel. The hamster’s wheel is encrusted with diamonds. It has to be the world’s fanciest hamster wheel and yet that doesn’t change the fact that the hamster is going nowhere. No amount of bling will change that reality.

I empathise with that hamster sometimes.

We all go through seasons where we feel like we are running to stand still. The sheer volume of life admin, school activities and family taxi driving can leave you exhausted – parenting is not for the faint-hearted! I regularly lost track of P.E. kit schedules and panicked about simultaneous dance classes and youth club lifts.

It’s especially demanding if you are working outside the home, have health challenges or are parenting alone. And then there are big decisions about moving to a new house or taking a promotion. When is the right time for this stuff?

Sometimes I am so busy running on that wheel and ‘getting stuff done’ that I forget the wisdom of today’s proverb. I find myself merrily establishing my own plans, hoping God will bless all that I need to do, but I don’t always stop long enough to ask him about them.

In John 5:19, Jesus said he had to be about his Father’s business, doing and saying what his Father showed him. If Jesus felt it necessary to stop and intentionally keep in step with his Father’s instructions, then maybe I should try doing the same.

This obviously doesn’t mean we should agonise in prayer over whether to do the laundry, or set a day of fasting over which pet to buy! But it does mean asking God what his business is for us in this season and following where he leads.

  • What are God’s priorities for us right now?
  • What is motivating us?
  • How many commitments are wise?
  • What do our children need from us at this time?
  • What do we need right now as their parent?

God encourages us to use our brains to make decisions each day, by using his principles, presence and priorities as our guide. So why not commit each day’s activities to God at the start of each day?

Maybe you could say a prayer together on the school run or as you have breakfast. Ask God to establish what is important and to govern your time and attitudes. Ask for his help and guidance so that you learn to walk each day following his footsteps.

Respond

  • Are there times when you feel like you’re running around (a lot) but not really getting anywhere? Find a moment to pause and ask God what is important to focus on today and follow where he leads.
  • Take time to consider what God might be doing in a through you in this season. What is God asking you to prioritise and who is he asking you to invest in? It could be an invitation to slow things down and practice the art of rest!
  • How could you practice following God’s footsteps as a family? Maybe it’s an addition to your mealtime or bedtime prayers, or intentionally involving God when you have decisions to make together.

Cathy’s top tip

Memorise this proverb, or rewrite it and make it personal to you and your family. Hang it near your front door as a simple prompt to help you invite God into your everyday.

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