The Known Path of Jesus

You Will Not Abandon My Soul

A Psalm of David.

You make known to me the path of life;
    in your presence there is fullness of joy;
    at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:11

The KNOWN Path

Despite our physical and earthly unknowns – God makes His path of life KNOWN. What is this path that David is talking about? It’s the path of following Jesus. In Matthew 7:14, Jesus says its not an easy path rather it’s narrow and hard and few will find it. But it leads to eternal life. The easy way is a wide path which seeks the approval of man rather than God. So to have confidence in this KNOWN path of God – we must follow Jesus with our lives. Regardless if its hard, because it will be. Thinking of a narrow path there is only one direction I can walk, straight. In a wider path there is so much room to roam I may actually start walking sideways or backwards, losing my sense of direction completely. I choose to follow the narrow path, where it keeps me directly inline with Jesus, the original trail blazer.

Fullness of Joy

This brings me to the second part of the verse, where David says, “in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” So, not only is the path guarantee life for us, although hard, there is still a fullness of joy. Where is this joy found? In His presence! Where is His presence? It’s in us who believe in Him! I can receive the joy of Christ where ever I am or whatever I am doing because His spirit lives in me. By believing and accepting Jesus as my Savior I no longer fear which path to take. Instead I make a commitment to the KNOWN path that promises a fullness of joy and pleasures forevermore. This brings me great peace because its not by my own strength that I must follow. It’s the Lord’s strength that goes before me and guides my steps. I have joy in knowing His presence is always with me.

I am Encouraged by the Known Path of Jesus

My husband and I have no idea where we will live or work come next year. We are facing so many unknowns about our own lives currently that this verse brings me great comfort. To know that my joy is not found in a location or in a job but its found in Jesus. His presence with me anywhere I am. Praise God for the narrow path, although hard to see (physically) where it leads, (spiritually/mentally) I know its good for me.

Proper Footwear

God gave me a dream about the importance of wearing proper footwear. I hope it inspires and gives you hope like it did for me too!

The dream:

Whilst in the water, I looked down at my feet and I was wearing footwear. I asked my surfing instructor, “why am I wearing shoes on a surfboard, don’t most people go barefoot”? The instructor replied, “yes, but this will help you have traction and stability on the board”.

Dream Interpretation

After I wrote down my dream I prayed and asked the Lord for its meaning. Then I started thinking about spiritual warfare and the armour of God. So I read Ephesians 6:10-17 and came across verse 15 about our feet being “fitted with the readiness that comes from gospel of peace”. Reflecting upon my dream, the obvious factor are surfers don’t wear shoes so the symbolism in that came obvious to me. I have allowed the waves of fear and worry to push me off my “board” or path. Instead I need to be stable in my faith, with gospel fitted footwear, so I can ride the waves instead of letting them crash over me.

It’s all about the proper footwear

Whenever I embark on a new sport or outdoor activity my first reaction is, “what’s the proper footwear”? I want to excel at what I am learning and not waste my time with improper gear. For example, I know what my feet need in a shoe to perform well on the basketball court because of my years of experience. But when my husband introduced me to rock climbing I had no clue what my feet needed. Turns out rock climbing shoes are a lot LESS comfortable than a cushioned basketball sole. However, the tight fit of a rock climbing shoe was important in manoeuvring up and around a rock wall. Proper footwear doesn’t always seem comfortable at first, but with trust in its purpose it can help maximize performance.

Spiritual proper footwear

As Christians we need to have this same mentality when we walk in our faith. Are we wearing the proper footwear to best suit our spiritual quest? When we read Ephesians 6:10-17 we learn about the armour of God. As part of the armour of God, footwear is part of the spiritual gear.

“…with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.”

Ephesians 6:15

My faith is in the Gospel of peace because then I am protected, supported and able to stand strong. I’m agile in my faith – ready to move in any direction. I fasten up my gospel shoes each morning because I know Jesus is the peace I stand on. Fully prepared and ready to move so wherever I go I can share the good news. I trust in the purpose of the Gospel and fasten it under my feet to be ready for anything that shakes my path.

Unlike buying a shoe at a store, the gospel shoe has already been purchased on our behalf. It is gift to receive. The peace of Jesus is a gift for anyone to receive.

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God”.

Ephesians 2:8

Unlike a shoe where its purpose is for one thing, the gospel shoe has purpose in all things. So trust in your fitted gospel feet – the first shoe you should be putting on to start your day!

“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!”

Isaiah 52:7

Race like You Mean it

A Poem by: Emily Aspinall

How I am to drive, starts and ends with Him.
Every thought and action with every limb.

In-between it all, I choose to follow.
For a victory that is not hollow.

Painted lines on course, keeps me on the straight.
Although narrow, it secures my end fate.

Yet many will not make it, I still race.
Set backs, I pit stop, to recharge my pace.

Never giving up, I drive for the prize.
Already obtaining it keeps me wise.

In passion and fear of going off course.
Like good engineering, He fuels my force.

In control, suited up, I drive with ease.
I’m racing for Him who qualifies me.

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.

1 Corinthians 9:24-27

Hero of Heroes

Who’s the Hero of Heroes?

In the book of Daniel, we learn about Daniel – a devoted man of God who served in the palace among other highly esteemed men (Daniel 1:3-6). He served different types of kings in his lifetime. God gifted him with favour and the ability to interpret all kinds of visions and dreams. Known for his outstanding abilities, handsome good looks (Daniel 1:4), wisdom and courage – Daniel had it all! He’s a hero! But when we read about Daniel we see that the true HERO of HEROES was God working through him.

Daniel’s faith – the lions den.

King Darius was reigning in this time and he liked Daniel very much due to his exceptional abilities. So the King wanted to appoint Daniel to the highest position in the kingdom. When the administrators and governors heard about this they were jealous because he had such favour with the King. So they wanted to find him guilty of something but knew Daniel wasn’t guilty of anything. So they had to get crafty..

…the administrators and the governors tried to find grounds for charges against Daniel in his conduct of government affairs, but they were unable to do so. They could find no corruption in him, because he was trustworthy and neither corrupt nor negligent. Finally these men said, “We will never find any basis for charges against this man Daniel unless it has something to do with the law of his God.”

Daniel 6:4-5

So these administrators and governors went as a group to the king and said:

“May King Darius live forever! The royal administrators, prefects, advisers and governors have all agreed that the king should issue an edict and enforce the decree that anyone who prays to any god or human being during the next thirty days, except to you, Your Majesty, shall be thrown into the lions’ den.  Now, Your Majesty, issue the decree and put it in writing so that it cannot be altered—in accordance with the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be repealed.” So King Darius put the decree in writing.

Daniel 6:6-9

The men knew how devoted Daniel was to God. So they easily caught him praying as he normally did. With the new decree in place, King Darius had no choice but to throw him into the lions den. But THIS is the redemption story…

The Lord rescues Daniel, the Hero of heroes.

An angel of the Lord came to rescue Daniel by shutting the mouths of the lions. When the King approached the lions den – Daniel answered him…

“May the king live forever! My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, Your Majesty.” The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.

Daniel 6:21-23

The Hero of Heroes – Jesus.

Since we are focusing on the hero of heroes, we look at Jesus in this story. Where can we see Jesus in this story through Daniel?

Daniel was innocent and yet charged and sentenced to his death. Jesus was a truly perfect man without fault and charged to his death. Mark 14:55 says, “The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for evidence against Jesus so that they could put him to death, but they did not find any.”

Faith is not based on our own possible outcomes but on the eternal communion with God.

Daniel did not die of this persecution, but the possibility was around every corner. Jesus died, and rose again, both were faithful through persecution even to the point of possible death. This is a good example because it shows us how faith is not based on our own possible outcomes. But rather on the certain outcome of eternal communion with God. We need to have this eternal perspective. This depth of relationship doesn’t necessarily remove suffering and pain, but can bring a layer of peace to our lives.

Trust in the HERO of HEROES that lives in YOU.

Like Daniel and Jesus we too can have a personal relationship with God – through prayer. Daniel prayed three times a day to posture his heart towards God. Daniel 6:10, “…Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God”. Jesus himself often withdrew from large crowds to be alone with the Father to pray. Luke 5:16, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed”. We too need to find ways in our daily routine that posture our hearts to God. Making time for our relationship with God will grow our faith in Him. Be bold like Daniel and embrace Jesus – the HERO of HEROES who lives in you!