Genesis 1:14 – And God said, "Let bright lights appear in the sky to separate the day from the night. They will be signs to mark off the seasons, the days, and the years." (NLT 1996)
Living near a lake has a four-season benefit, if people want to brave the two not-so-nice seasons. Last spring, my mom and my aunt decided to take a coffee to the lake and watch the ice fishermen bring in the fish huts. It never ceases to amaze me how soon and how quickly the ice is gone from the lake after the March 15th fishing deadline. This particular March 15th day was very warm, and much of the snow had already left, and the edge of the frozen lake was already water. As the fishermen began to drag their huts across the lake with their trucks and four-wheeled vehicles, the first groups came off without a problem. As the afternoon sun beat down, the water at the edge was increasing in width and depth, and large ruts were forming in the ice. Fishermen had to push and shove and wade into the water to help their fellow fishermen get their huts to safety.
My mom shared with me the sight of them all lined up, waiting and helping each other. They all seemed to be following in a single line and using the same spot as the previous person, making it more difficult for the next person in the line. Eventually, all the huts were removed from the lake safely. After they left, my mom and aunt were talking and wondering why they all chose the same path. Had they moved a bit to the right or left, then the journey off the ice would have been easier and safer, as they would not have all been travelling in the same rut.
Where does this leave us? I thought about how many times when I follow the person in front of me, and don't even consider another route. It is so easy to keep looking down as a way to get out of our difficulties, and then get caught in the ruts of life. Instead, we should be looking up and forward, to the One who came and died for us. When we look up and around to the Lord, we are able to see many more options before us. What seems obvious to people watching doesn't always seem so obvious to the people involved. We need to be prepared for each day and ready to walk and live according to His will, looking primarily up and forward towards His ways for us, and not just down at life's situations.
Hebrews 12:2 – Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. (NIV)
Prayer: Dear Lord, these words of advice seem so simple, yet they are some of the hardest to follow. Help us daily to focus on You and Your will for our lives. Thank You that when we fall into the ruts of life, You are there with us. Thank You for the people that You put into our lives who come alongside to help us through these situations. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.