Footprints

I started walking into work around 6:30 one day this past week. The sun was just starting to light the morning sky. I could see maybe 20 feet in front of me, but not much else. It had just snowed during the night. There was a fresh dusting of white, powdery snow on the sidewalk as I walked. With each step I could hear the crunch of the fresh snow compacting under my boots.

Not wanting to slip on any ice or trip over a jagged part of the sidewalk I walked with my head looking down. While I walked with my head down I saw something that caught my attention; someone else’s footprints. Really? Had someone else already walked on the sidewalk? It’s 6:30, surely no one was silly enough to go for a walk this early. Further down my path, it happened again additional footprints in the snow.

The Holy Spirit used this opportunity to remind me of a very honest truth that I believe we all need to hear at times:

There may be times that we feel we are walking through something alone. The truth is others have walked this path before us and God has delivered them. We may not see them or walk with them, but we know others have been down the same path we have.

God’s Word gives us incredible insight to examples of this.

You may feel like you’re the first person to feel like someone was out to get you. Maybe it’s someone at work who is angling for your job. Maybe it’s a sibling who is trying to gain favor with your parents at your expense. There are footprints in scripture that walked a familiar path.

God’s Word gives us the example of David, who was being hunted by the jealous King Saul. David kept having to hide in caves and dodge spears thrown at him by the unruly ruler. Time and time again David had to flee to stay alive. He was delivered from the life on the run when Saul died in battle, thus freeing David to take the throne that he was appointed to by God.

Maybe it’s not feeling like you’re being unjustly persecuted. Maybe you struggle with giving into temptations you know you shouldn’t. You’re not the only one who has walked down that snowy path.

Joseph worked his way from imprisonment to being in charge of Potiphar’s home. He oversaw Potiphar’s home and everything he owned. Nothing was held back from Joseph, except Potiphar’s wife. She noticed that Joseph was a very handsome and well-built young man. She began to look at him lustfully and demanded that Joseph sleep with her. Given Potiphar’s placement in the Pharaohs regime, one would deduce that his wife would most-likely be very attractive. I’m sure there may have been thoughts that entered his brain trying to rationalize it. But what did Joseph do? He resisted and fled.

Scriptures are full of true stories of people who have put their footprints on the path you’re traveling. It’s not just the accounts in God’s Holy Word that can relate. Right now, there are others all around us that have been tempted, felt persecuted, felt unloved that have been rescued by the one true God that loves them and will always provide a way out when we’re struggling or hurting. I would encourage you that if you feel that you’re alone in something, to pray that God would bring someone into your life that relates to your struggle and can be a holy encouragement to you during this time.

I’m confident that the footprints you’re leaving on your troublesome path will be an encouragement to someone else when they travel the same path.

Father God, thank you so much that we’re not alone. Thank you for showing us that there are others around us that can be an encouragement when we think there is no hope; when we feel alone in the dark. Lord, I ask that whoever needs to ask for someone to walk with them will ask You for that person. But not just that Lord. I petition You that You would put it on others hearts to be an encouragement to others that are currently on a difficult path they once walked. It’s my desire Father that Your body, Your church would unite together and grow closer to You as they encourage each other in godly love and compassion. To You, Father, be all glory. Amen!