The Next Step

The Next Step

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
—Psalm 119:105

It is a mistake to think that God only communicates to us in one way. The truth is, He speaks in a variety of ways. He speaks through Scripture, through prayer, through the church, through the wise counsel of friends and authors, and through our circumstances and desires. That leads to another truth about discovering God’s will. And that is, God reveals only what we need to know.

I remember a few years ago our church hired a consultant. One day the consultant asked me, “Do you know the most important question any leader can answer?” I said, “What’s that?” He said, “It’s the question of next. What’s the next thing I need to do?” He explained that sometimes people get bogged down trying to determine what they are going to do in one year, five years, or ten years without knowing the next step they need to take. And I think that truth applies to all of us. Have you noticed that God rarely unravels the whole blueprint of our lives ahead of time? Why is it that God does not allow us to see what is going to happen twenty, thirty, or forty years from now? Perhaps He knows that if we knew, we would be paralyzed with fear. Matthew 6:34 says, “Each day has enough trouble of its own.” God knows that.

I think another reason God doesn’t tell us His whole plan for our life ahead of time is that if we knew the whole plan, we wouldn’t be nearly as dependent upon Him. Think about driving in a thick fog. When you are in fog, rarely will you travel at 80 miles an hour. Instead you inch along because you can only see a short distance ahead of you. On the other hand, when it is a bright, sunny day, you tend to put the pedal to the metal, don’t you? It is the same way in our relationship with God. When we can only see the next step we are going to take, it makes us more dependent upon God. It forces us to develop our relationship with God.

The psalmist said, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105). Have you ever been out in the woods on a cloudy night? It’s difficult to see when there is no illumination from above. But hopefully you have a flashlight or a lantern that governs your steps. That flashlight or lantern isn’t powerful enough to illuminate the next two or three miles. But it does give you enough light to take the next step and the next step and the next step. That’s what the psalmist said God’s Word is like. God’s Word, His communication to us, does not illuminate the rest of your life. It does not tell you God’s entire plan for you. But it gives you just the light you need to take the next step.

If you sincerely want to know what God’s next step is for your business, for your family, for any area of your life, remember that Jesus said in John 10:27 that His sheep hear His voice. God is concerned with every step you take. He promises to give you the guidance you need. And His voice can be heard by those who truly belong to Him.

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Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Discovering God’s Will” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2008.
Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.