As we journey through life each of us leaves a path for others to follow. One thing that got me thinking about the path we leave is a quote I read a couple of years ago by Scott Rodin. You may have never heard of him but he teaches and focuses on our responsibilities as stewards of God’s gifts and grace. A saying of his that I saved in my prayer list is, “It is not whom you are leading but who is leading you that will determine your legacy.” Implicit in this expression is the idea that we are all walking a path following someone. The other thing that got me thinking about the path we leave is the poem The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost. Implicit in both is the idea that our path is the fruit of our choices. Jesus highlighted this issue of our path choices as well.
13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. Matthew 7:13–14 (NKJV)
Clearly our choice of path as Jesus presented it in The Sermon on the Mount is one with eternal consequences. Yet beyond that choice we also make daily choices in our walk with Jesus. Below we see some things that the scriptures have to say about the path we take as trumpeted forth by Jeremiah and highlighted by Job.
16 Thus says the Lord: “Stand in the ways and see, And ask for the old paths, where the good way is, And walk in it; Then you will find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’ Jeremiah 6:16 (NKJV)
7 That path no bird knows, Nor has the falcon’s eye seen it. 8 The proud lions have not trodden it, Nor has the fierce lion passed over it. Job 28:7–8 (NKJV)
These scriptures point to paths not well trodden but important. Yet scripture tells us not only how to find the right path, it also tells us how to stay on it. When we look to Him for guidance and seek His presence, we can be confident He will guide us on the path of life.
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3:5–6 (NKJV)
11 You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11 (NKJV)
Thus, I leave you with these thoughts. While we all leave a path for others if we continually look to Him for guidance our path will be marked with signposts like truth, integrity, faithfulness, prayer and meaningful fellowship with others. While there will be failures on our path, we all have them, they can be marked by signposts of repentance. We can leave a path that others will want to follow.