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The path less traveled.

It seemed like a nice day for a walk to me….

My dog, Nina, thought it was. Although, she thinks every minute of every day is good for a walk.

22 degrees and snow blowing all around…what’s not to love, right?!

Question: Who else here get’s frustrated when they have to share a trail with others? Be honest!

I don’t like to share a trail. It’s not because I am that much of a hermit (or whatever word you would use) but I like to let Nina off her leash. And, if you know Nina, you know I have somehow turned her into an “introverted” dog.

Either that or she takes her “alpha dog” title a little too seriously.

“What are you trying to say, Stacey?”

She eats other dogs for breakfast no matter the time of day;)

I digress.

There aren’t many people who prefer to take walks in the winter when it’s below freezing and snow is blowing like a mad man. Therefore, we had the whole trail to ourselves. This is the situation (with a Nina):

If you look really close you will see Nina in there somewhere. White dogs and snow….smh.

As we are walking along I was reminded…

How often do we not go somewhere or do something because of fear? Or maybe it’s because of lack of courage, laziness, or being uncomfortable.

Maybe it’s because the place we want to go has too many people who will be there. Or possibly it’s because the weather is not desirable or we are afraid a bear might eat us. I don’t know….what is a reason you don’t go some places?

I am walking along here looking at this path thinking “what a wide open space we have to do whatever we want with no interruptions”. And honestly, that’s a call to one of my deeper needs, space and solitude. But then I stopped in my thought for a moment and a new one popped up “how am I able to share a smile with someone if there is no one here”. (One of my favorite things to do. As an introvert I prefer to share the love of Jesus with strangers simply by smiling at them and saying “hello”. That is where I am currently at with getting out of my comfort zone….just being honest. It’s a journey, right?)

I am sure you have all heard the poem…

“The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost. If not, here is a link:The Road Not Taken.

Or you have probably heard the scripture:

Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.

-Matthew 7:13

Both direct us to  taking the path that is the less chosen. This path is more than likely less chosen because it seems rougher or uncomfortable or uncertain terrain. Fear, worry, doubt, laziness, and our comfort zone all hinder us from experiencing that narrow path or the “path less traveled”.

What are we missing out on?

By doing this, by letting all these things hinder us from taking that “narrow path”, what are we missing out on in life?

-I truly believe God desires us to take the less traveled path. The path no one else wants to take. And it’s along that path where He will show us opportunities that we never knew existed and share with us moments we never would have experienced had we let our feelings win.-

His word directs us to take the narrow gate. It’s not the gate many choose.

When you feel doubtful, discouraged, fearful, uncomfortable – (insert your feeling here) – God says this:

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.

-Joshua 1:9

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed; for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

-Isaiah 41:10

They do not fear bad news; they confidently trust the Lord to care for them. They are confident and fearless…

-Psalm 112:7-8a

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

                          -Psalm 23:1-4     Read into this one, commentary (link below) is amazing! – Matthew Henry Commentary

I could go on and on!

There is so much goodness in the word of God. So much direction!

So let’s say you’ve chosen the path less traveled; you are taking the narrow gate. Now what?

Now you trust God to provide you opportunities and moments to share HIS love with others. You trust Him to guide you where to go and who to talk to.

He has commanded us:

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey all that I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

-Matthew 28:19-20

If we won’t go as Christians, who will?

We have to be willing to take the path no one else will take. To find those opportunities that no one else will find. It all starts with taking the initial first step.

And typically, once you get walking along in the blizzard, you will realize it’s not so bad. You actually start to warm up! You start to realize that God really will take care of you.

Are you willing to take that first step in trusting what God has in store for you on the path less traveled? Are you ready to enter through the narrow gate?

 

 

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