“You cannot pass,” he said. The orcs stood still, and a dead silence fell. “I am a servant of the Secret Fire, wielder of the flame of Anor. You cannot pass. The dark fire will not avail you, flame of Udûn. Go back to the Shadow! You cannot pass.”― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring
Last summer I was walking out to my car at lunch when I suddenly found my face within inches of the gravel parking lot. I couldn’t figure out why I was walking one minute and sprawled on the ground the next. Luckily, my large purse caught the worst of it, but one knee and shin took a beating. Afterwards I realized the culprit was a pair of sandals, overstretched and in need of replacing. They had rolled out from under my feet, tripping me and sending me to the ground.
The moral of the story is I should have thrown out the shoes at the end of the last summer. I knew they sometimes would wobble beneath my feet, but they were comfortable and I hate shoe shopping. The truth was they were not solid; they were not trustworthy. As humans, we tend to put our trust in things that are not always worthy of such trust, but there is one thing we can depend upon: The Word of the Lord.
And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.Isaiah 58:11
The Word of God is a spring of living water. Several years ago, I came across a commentary on a scripture talking about how the people had chosen a broken cistern over a spring of water. A cistern is man-made and can only hold rain water, and broken cistern would leak, so it wasn’t very reliable. A spring, on the other hand, is constantly bubbling up water. When we tap into God’s living springs, we will never be thirsty again unless we forget to take a drink. It is always available to us.
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.1 Corinthians 15:58
We can stand steadfast and unmovable when we are standing on the Word of God. It is a sure foundation. When we make decisions based on God’s Truth, we can stand with confidence. God calls each of us to different assignments, and we have to act on our individual calling. When we do that, the labor will not be in vain. However, our good deeds and intentions are wrong if they are out of God’s will for us, so keep in the lane God assigned you to and He will use it.
5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.Proverbs 3:5-6
We can trust God, but trust means letting go. It’s not easy, but He will not force us. He will pursue us, though. There is a lot of peace found in letting go and letting God take the helm. He knows the way and He knows what’s coming.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.James 1:5
When we are unsure of the next step, we can always get wisdom from the source. God’s Word is full of wisdom, and He will give it to us if we just ask.
The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.Isaiah 40:8
Best of all, His Word is eternal. Everything else in this world is subject to change, but His Word stands forever. So, we know that we can stand our ground as long as we are standing on His Word.
So, throw away those shoes and anything else that is not trustworthy. Then, when you’ve done all else, just stand (Ephesians 6:13).