“Show me your ways, O Lord,
Teach me your paths;
Guide me in your truth and teach me,
For you are God my Savior,
And my hope is in you all day long (Psalm 25:4-5).”
It’s interesting that the Bible frequently uses metaphors of journey to describe our relationship with God. “Show me your ways,” the Psalmist says, “teach me your paths.” These metaphors —“ways” and “paths”— bring to mind rich images of what the life of faith can be. Picture yourself standing at the edge of a wood into which a path opens. You follow it for a while until the path forks and you are forced to decide which way to go. A short while later, you look up to see yet another path departing from the one you are on. In no time, you realize that there are literally hundreds of possibilities, some of which may take you where you need to go and some of which could lead to destruction.
The frightening thing about many paths, of course, is that it’s easy to get lost! It’s far safer to stay home or in familiar spaces than to get on the way. One option, therefore, is to avoid the journey altogether. Stay home, take no risks, guard your life. That is most certainly not the Christian way. “Follow me,” Jesus has said to us. Another option is to step out into the adventures to which God calls us, to step out of our comfort zones in the service of God and neighbor, and to trust God to lead. There is a profound humility and openness in the Psalmists’ prayer. “Show me your ways… teach me your paths…” It’s the prayer of an adventurer who trusts the leader.
Prayer: (There’s no sense trying to improve on the prayer of the Psalmist. Offer Psalm 25:4-5 as your own prayer today.)