An Encouraging Word

JUST KEEP WALKING

I don’t know how long I walked along the shore.

Probably minutes.  Maybe hours.  It felt like days.

I was vacationing with my family in Sea Island, Georgia, and early one morning I decided to go exploring down the beach.

A lazy surf gently lapped up and down a hard-packed sea of sand as I journeyed east toward the rising sun.  Sea Island is much further north than the beaches of Florida, so the salt-tinged air was cool and sharp; a refreshing change from the oppressive humidity that usually keeps me away from the beaches back home.

I walked past driftwood clusters and derelict canoes left to rot in the sand.

I walked past lifeless jellyfish that ventured too far from their ocean territory and now lay abandoned on the beach.

I walked past grand old estate homes that lined the shore, much farther back from the waterfront than they used to be because of the shifting coastline of the barrier island.

I walked and walked until my stomach told me it was getting close to lunch and it was time to head back home.  There was just one problem…

I wasn’t sure where home was anymore.

I didn’t know how far I had walked, and I’d been so caught up in the beauty of the morning that I’d forgotten to keep track of good landmarks to guide me.  It’s not that I was entirely lost, I just wasn’t sure how long it would take me to get where I needed to go, or if I would recognize the signs when they came along.

Have you ever felt that way about your life?

Maybe it’s a career choice or an educational path.  Maybe it’s the state of a relationship or an element of personal growth.

Maybe it’s your walk with God.

We all have those seasons where we find ourselves pacing the shoreline of our lives, convinced we’re headed in the right direction but confused about how to find the final destination.  If that’s you, can I encourage you to do something?

Just keep walking.

I know it seems hard and uncertain.  I know you’ve been asking for answers that haven’t showed up yet.  I know it gets so tiring sometimes, the waiting and the hoping that seems to always go unfulfilled, but I’m asking you…

Just keep walking.

In the Bible, the Apostle Paul writes confidently from his heart, “And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” (Philippians 1:6)

If you’re a follower of Jesus, then you can have confidence that He is not going to abandon you!  He will not leave you in the wasteland forever, but just like He himself spent days in the desert being tested and refined, when your time comes you’ll come out of this season stronger and more empowered than ever before.

Just keep walking!

I made it home, of course.  After walking a long way back in the direction from which I came, I arrived at a familiar concrete staircase that led up from the sandy beach to the solid path that took me home.  I hadn’t been sure of where it was, but I knew it once I got there.

If you hang in there, if you hold fast to the promise of God that He is with you, then I have good news.  You may not be sure what your destination looks like, but if you’re in Christ, you’ll know it once you get there, too.

Just keep walking.

-Pastor Phillip