The sweet, little dimpled hands of my toddler carefully position oversized cardboard blocks throughout our tiny living room floor. His joy is contagious as he creates an obstacle course all by himself. He readies at the start of the course to bravely walk across (which is really just all the blocks end to end of each other, but we won’t tell him that). He’s so confident and sure of himself.
As his little feet step onto the first block his demeanor changes, he’s suddenly off balance, wobbly and unsure of his footing. He tries to take a couple steps to cross his carefully made course, but he can’t do it. His efforts are in vain on his own, and he reaches out his squishy hand to grab mine. As his fingers wrap around my hand, he’s suddenly steadied, surefooted and secure. He knows he needs help crossing the course and trusts the one he knows will steady him.
I know as women we don’t carry around gigantic blocks on a daily basis, but our blocks take on other forms––the future, our kids’ education, ministry, stresses in our marriage, the unknown and the list could go on. We strive to meticulously control and place the pieces of our life where we want them, so we can confidently walk about and show how brave, successful, known and loved we are. Has that control ever satisfied? Does the approval received ever quench the longing thirst that’s inside our souls for more? Oh friend, it never has for me and I can assure you it won’t for you.
When we idolize any desire above our heavenly Father, we will always be longing for more. Our vain attempts at control certainly will not hold us up; we will always lose our footing. As women serving abroad, there are levels to our lives that feel so out of our control that we drain our strength and emotional energy trying to control what was never designed for us to hold. Our desires of being known in worlds where we’re foreign, the longing for stillness amidst the chaos of transition, grace as we parent grieving children, and kindness as we manage our stressful daily lives can only be fulfilled when we desire Christ above all else.
The powerful work of the gospel is the only truth that will steady us. The truth that we are sinners and God reached down with his Son Jesus and through His love and sacrifice on the cross brought us closer to Him––is the only truth that will give us surefooting. The gentle, yet strong hands of our Father are always there to hold and steady us with His love. When we live from the truth of the gospel––that we are children of God, deeply loved and covered daily in new mercies and grace, only then we can walk around surefooted and secure. Let the gospel truth secure us as we stand in what we know and hold the hand of the one who knows the rest.
Being surefooted in gospel truth doesn’t mean we won’t ever stumble, that our daily circumstances won’t change, or we won’t feel like we’re drowning some days. Walking in this daily grace means that we know whose we are and who we are in Him. Let the words “It is finished” gently remind us that we don’t have to add anything to the work that was completed on our behalf. Who we are and whose we are will never change because of the redemptive work on the cross. We don’t have to align life’s blocks in just the right order to feel secure, we can trust that God is enough in this moment and will always be as we journey through life with Him.
Where is an area of your life that you’re so desperately trying to control? Have you ever felt surefooted in Christ in the past and what did that look like? Observe yourself with grace and ask––where am I not trusting in the gospel in this area of my life?