When you have no idea where He’s leading …

by Kari on July 2, 2012

“How far?” Jeff looked up at me as he pulled on his running shoes, a little challenge in his voice. How much was I up for?

I took a deep breath, clipping my ipod onto my shorts. I’m such a wimp.

“Six miles.”

He smiled. “Alright.”

We hadn’t run together in ages. With two little monkeys on our hands, we always run separately. And while I’d passed the six-mile mark on my own, I usually choose the flattest route possible and run my snail-pace and make the whole endeavor as painless as possible.

I hate pain. 

We slipped in our earphones and jogged out onto the narrow country road by our house. He took the lead and with no idea where he would take me, I resolved just to follow.

I’ve been learning to follow. 

Literally. Back on June 1st, God put on my heart to focus all my energy this month on following Jeff. On blessing him, cheering for him, serving him, praying for him, encouraging him, affirming him, loving him and championing him. To simply following his lead, wherever it took me.

So that’s what I’ve been doing for a month.

It was good I’d had some practice before Jeff took me on this run. 

After two miles Jeff turned us off the regular flat-route I call home, and took us down trails, through parks, up and down different roads, and through the forest. Up and down we went, my thighs burning. Every once in a while he’d look over and raise his eyebrows and give me a thumbs up to ask, “You ok?” I’d nod and try to smile and give him a thumbs up back. “I”m alive.”

Now, I don’t mean to be overly dramatic–it was only a 6 mile run. But it was far harder and faster than I normally run and I’m not exaggerating when I say I prayed the entire way. See, I’m a wimp when navigating the unknown. When I run, I always run the same path. I always go the same pace. I usually go the same distance. I get easily frightened when I’m challenged to do something physical that’s outside my comfort zone. I’m really really really not one of those hard-core workout people who loves risk and daring new adventures. Nope. In fact, if I really had my way … I’d walk instead.

But Jeff knows me. And he knows that I’d prefer a stroll through the park and a caramel macchiato, and he also knows that I can do much more than I think I can. He knows I won’t actually die even though I say I will. 9 1/2 years of running together has taught him that.

So as we run I pray, and I can see so clearly that learning to follow Jeff is simply learning to follow God. Do I trust Him? When He takes a sharp left turn and leads me straight UP the hill instead of down the flat course, Will I follow Him?

Will I follow Him even when the path doesn’t look safe at all? 

Will I commit to following Him wherever He goes? Whatever route He chooses? However long? At whatever pace?

Do I actually trust Him?

Do I trust that wherever He leads me will be for my good? Do I trust that He will never run me to death? Do I trust that however long this race, He will give me the strength I need to run with endurance? To finish strong?

It was perfect that we did our run in silence. There was no space for objection, complaints, whining. I held my tongue, prayed to God, and followed my man.

And each time he looked back I gave the thumbs up: “I’m ok.”

Oh God for the grace to do that each day. To hold my tongue, pray to You, and follow my man. To stick right behind him and when he glances back, to give him the thumbs up sign and let him know I’m ok. No matter what we face, I’m ok. No matter how scared I am, or how steep the road looks, I’m ok. 

As I’m learning to follow my man–and my God–that is my prayer. 


{How are you learning to follow the Father today? Please share any life-lessons with us, so we can glean as well. Thanks so much for reading.}