You will make known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
God is ready and willing to show us the road of life. Are we paying close attention to what he has made known about this path? He has repeatedly shown me this road represents our pilgrimage, many have gone before us. There are times we pass through the Valley of Baca (Psalm 84:5). Baca means weeping. We will cry on the way to our holy place, heaven, but he blesses us with the joy of his presence during our entire journey--bumpy back-roads, potholes, smooth super-highways and all.
It's passing through the Valley of Baca, however, that leads us to contrition. Contrition means to be smitten, maimed, dejected or sad. Jacob experienced being contrite when he wrestled with God all night long. Jacob was so determined, it is written that the man (God) could not overpower him.* Finally, God touched the socket of Jacob's hip so that his hip was maimed. He walked with a limp for the rest of his life.
Jacob's hip represents our human pride. Most of us are downright hard-headed (I know I am), but once we wrestle with God and allow him to show us how to be broken-hearted, dejected and sad over our pride and sin, miracles begin to occur. Like Jacob, we receive a new name and a mission, the path of life becomes clear. This happens when we have the same mindset of Jacob: "I will not let you go unless you bless me" (Genesis 32:26). We are less likely to stray off the path, if we hold on tight to God every moment of every day, living totally dependent on him. The good news is he has a firm grip on us, even if we let go and roam off the well worn road.
It doesn't matter if our path leads us through valleys or over mountain-tops, God remains faithful. He dries ours tears, clears our confusion, and protects us fiercely. Nothing can separate us from his love. The path of life consists of total surrender to a totally trustworthy God. Is my listening heart limping? I pray so. Amen
*read story found in Genesis 32:22-32