I was driving home from Seattle the other night and had one thing missing. My glasses! I had forgotten them at home but didn’t discover it until I was already 50 miles into the journey. I was bummed because now that meant I would have to leave much earlier and forego a coffee date with my oldest son. I don’t see well at night and my glasses are an essential part of my ability to drive in the dark.
I ended up leaving a bit later than I planned but it was still light and the sunset was way off in the distance. Road signs were somewhat fuzzy but manageable. When it started raining it complicated things a little but I kept my eyes straight ahead.
Soon the sky turned to dusk and darkness descended. Okay, now it was more challenging. I was headed through the winding part of the small mountain pass, and it was DARK. I followed the taillights ahead of me and kept my eye on the white line. I never knew stripes could be so helpful, I am beginning to appreciate those bright orange construction workers who are the artists of the highway. I was almost to civilization now with street lamps lining the rest of the interstate. It took most of my concentration and with no time to be distracted by music, I turned the radio off. Nearly two hours later, I pulled in the garage and breathed a thankful prayer that God helped me navigate home without incident. I vowed I would make sure that it didn’t happen again.
When I crawled into bed that night, I thought about the verse I had learned as a child, “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.” Psalm 119:105. It was one of my first bible memorizations as an 8 year old Pioneer Girl earning my winning badge attached to my sash. Now years later, it still resided in my memory and surfaced as I thought about the drive home and how I struggled to see in the dark with limited lighting, or should I say blurry lighting.
As I snuggled deeper into the covers, it hit me as that Bible verse of my childhood reminded me of steering my car in pitch black with less than 20/20 vision. It’s in the darkest of nights that I need the light to see how I can take the next step. You don’t need a light in the daytime, in fact I probably wouldn’t see it much because the sun drowns it out. I don’t even think about seeing just right ahead because my eye can see clearly far into the distance. But in the dark is when I really need a light.
In the troubled times when I can’t find my way, God’s word is my lamp, my light, my illumination that spills onto the path. I also noticed that it says it is a lamp for my feet, which means right where I am stepping at that very moment, not three strides ahead, but in the present. The lamp shines around my feet exposing the place to go so I won’t fall or trip. That is the promise of God’s Word, it is everything in the dark and everything to stay on the path. Without it, there is no certainty and no assurance of heading in the right direction.
As I drifted off to sleep I was reassured to know that my anxiety doesn’t have to get so whipped up because I can’t see more than a few steps ahead of me. God’s truth promises to guide me with just enough light to keep walking in the right direction toward home.