I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.
Do not be like the horse or the mule,
which have no understanding
but must be controlled by bit and bridle
or they will not come to you.
The first part is a great promise to us. God wants to show us the way and lead us. The second part is a warning that many unfortunately bring upon themselves.
It is difficult to explain the relations precisely and clearly. Perhaps the example of our dog will be of help. If I want to go for a walk with him, he needs to be on a leash. Then he has all the freedom of the road, but he is constrained by the leash. Walks are important for him. He enjoys walking and accepts the leash as part of the deal. Obviously he would enjoy walking without the leash even more. But he does not know where we want to go and he will do some stupid things off the leash.
God always makes good on His promises. And we are allowed to take the promise in Verse 8 personally!
We enter into a dependency on Him, our Lord. We make a decision to walk on His paths, follow His goals and His rules. And then He is able to lead us to where He wants us. His intentions with us are always good! His plans and thoughts for us are moulded by love and affection! Thus we are able to entrust ourselves to Him.
The dog’s leash is very short and strong. He must go where I want him to go. God’s leash for us is love. Our love for Jesus, and God’s love for us. We are able to tear this leash, claiming our “freedom”. He does not want us to be His puppets!
To walk on God’s leash must be a daily, conscious decision on our part. Our old, stubborn ego rebels. It wants to be proud, free, independent and wild. But that is no longer my wish. I want to walk on God’s leash, rest in the shadow of His wings, hear His words of love, desire His protection and His goals. I want to be in a relationship with Him.
When I walk away from Him, I become like a mule. Like a stubborn mule, who knows everything better. The moment where I yearn for His protection is quick to arrive. Because I am quick to land in the quagmire from which He saved me. No, I definitely do not want to be a stupid, stubborn mule!
I prefer to be tied to Him, searching for Him and His presence. I prefer to ask His advice and leadership, to rest in the shadow of His wings. Such is a good life for me. I desire to walk on His path. That gives meaning to my life. Then my life can bear fruit for eternity.
Thank You Jesus, for leading me! The closer I remain to You, the less detours I need to take. The closer I am to You, the more blessings I am able to experience and the more I am able to be a blessing to others. Your proximity makes life worth living!
Bible study for today: Psalm 39,1-14