Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Who am I following?

There are so many times in life when we can choose to trust only ourselves.  We have fears about what lies ahead so we muster up everything we have and dig in and say, "I can do this." Perhaps we have a big decision to make and even when we hear a very clear answer we want to turn and run in the other direction for fear of the unknown.  I think we know deep down that trusting in our human self is plain old foolish. Yet somehow we convince ourselves that it is the best.  When in fact, it isn't so.  I believe in a God so much bigger than us.  He is the God that sent his one and only son to die for me so that I could spend eternity with Him. He is my creator.  I need to continually remind myself that nothing else, NOTHING, in the world matters that bringing Him glory.  The problem is, we as humans so often struggle to remember this.  I have been reading The Chronicles of Narnia books to the kids every day while we eat lunch.  I have already read them several times myself yet every single time I read them the stories come to life, and I find myself awed at the writing of C.S. Lewis.  Little did I know that God was placing these books in my life at a time when I needed a little (a huge) reminder of just who God is and how he wants to be the one to lead me and guide me.

We are on book 4, Prince Caspian.  Peter, Susan, Edmund, Lucy, and their dwarf friend are deep in the Narnian forest attempting to locate Prince Caspian to help him defeat King Miraz.  One night while they are all asleep, Lucy is awakened by Aslan.  He tells her that she must wake all the others and have her follow him.  The problem is, she has already tried that once and no one believed that she truly did see Aslan.  Lucy wakes the others and convinces them (after some time) that they must follow her.  None of them are very happy about this....

     "And so at last they got on the move.  Lucy went first, biting her lip and trying not to say all the things she thought of saying to Susan.  But she forgot them when she fixed her eyes on Aslan.  He turned and walked at a slow pace about thirty yards ahead of them.  The others had only Lucy's directions to guide them, for Aslan was not only invisible to them but silent as well.  His big cat-like paws made no noise on the grass...
     ...for a long way Aslan went along the top of the precipices. Then they came to a place where some little trees grew right on the edge.  He turned and disappeared among them. Lucy held her breath, for it looked as if he had plunged over the cliff; but she was too busy keeping him in sight to stop and think about this.  She quickened her pace and was soon among the trees herself.  Looking down, she could see a steep and narrow path going slantwise down into the gorge between the rock, and Aslan descending it. He turned and looked at her with his happy eyes.  Lucy clapped her hands and began to scramble down after him.  From behind her she heard the voices of the others shouting, "Lucy! Look out for goodness' sake. You're right on the edge of the gorge.  Come back-" and then a moment later, Edmund's voice saying, "No she's right. There is a way down."
     Half-way down the path Edmund caught up with her.
"Look!" he said in great excitement.  "Look! What's that shadow crawling down in front of us?"
 "It's his shadow," said Lucy.
 "I do believe you are right Lu," said Edmund." "I can't think how I didn't see it before."....
     ....In a few minutes they were at the bottom and the roaring of water filled their ears.  Treading delicately, like a cat, Aslan stepped from stone to stone across the stream.  In the middle he stopped, bent down to drink, and as he raised his shaggy head, dripping from the water, he turned to face them again.  This time Edmund saw him.  "Oh Aslan!".....
     .....Presently they came to another steep path, up the face of the farther precipices.  These were far higher than the ones they had just descended, and the journey up them was a long and tedious zig-zag.  Fortunately, the moon shone right above the gorge so that neither side was in shadow.  Lucy was nearly blown when the tail and hind legs of Aslan disappeared over the top: but with one last effort she scrambled after him and came out, rather shaky-legged and breathless, on the hill they had been trying to reach ever since they left Glasswater.
"Lucy," said Susan in a very small voice.
"Yes?" said Lucy.
"I see him now. I'm sorry."
 "That's all right."
 "But I've been far worse then you know.  I really believed it was him-he, I mean-yesterday.  When he warned us not to go down to the fir wood.  And I really believed it was him tonight, when you woke us up.  I mean, deep down inside.  Or I could have, if I'd let myself. But I just wanted to get out of the woods and-and-oh, I don't know. And what ever am I to say to him?"
"Perhaps you don't need to say much," uttered Lucy.
"Oh Aslan," said King Peter, dropping on one knee and raising the Lion's heavy paw to his face, "I'm so glad.  And I'm so sorry. I"ve been leading them wrong ever since we started and especially yesterday morning."
"My dear son," said Aslan.
Then he turned and welcomed Edmund. "Well done," were his words.
Then, after an awful pause, the deep voice said, "Susan." Susan made no answer but the others thought she was crying.  "You have listened to your fears, child," said Aslan.  "Come, let me breathe on you.  Forget them.  Are you brave again?"  

At this point, tears were pretty much coming down my face as I was reading.  My daughter is looking at me wondering what in the world is going on and why her mama is crying.  All I can keep thinking as I"m reading this is...Am I keeping my eyes on my Savior?  Am I following Him or am I listening to other voices around me convincing me that another way is better and that the road I'm taking is too dangerous and uncomfortable?  What about my fears?  Yes, there are A LOT of them, but he never promised me that He wouldn't lead me by the edge of the cliff or through deep gorges and precipices.  He promised that he would lead me.  He never said that I wouldn't have fears, but that through my fears I need to trust Him.

Isaiah 58:11 says:

"The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail."

One of my favorite songs right now is on the Bethel Loft Sessions CD titled, "Come to Me."  At the very end of the song she sings my favorite lyrics, "Don't look to the right or to the left, keep your eyes on Me.  I will not be shaken I will not be moved oh.  I am the hand to hold, I am the truth, I am the way yea.  Just come to me, come to me cause I'm all that you need"  Amen. 

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