I run in the path of your commands, or you have broadened my understanding. Psalm 119:32
As you drive down the Pacific Coast Highway, one of the most scenic and beautiful drives in the states, there are many places you become thankful and at the same time terrified at the presence of guardrails. Of course, the guardrails are there for your protection since there are many places along the drive that are winding and narrow and one mistake could leave you with a car doing its best impression of a submarine.
As we walk along the journey of faith, we have the guardrails of God to help guide us and protect us and help us along the journey. David says in Psalm 23, that the rod and the staff comfort him. The staff was used to guide the sheep along the path, the path that led towards green pastures and still waters. The path that God uses to restore and refresh our souls. You see, guardrails are there for our benefit. However, I find myself quite often fighting against them because they inhibit my view of what I think freedom is! If I want to drive on the other side of the road, I should be able to. However, this isn’t how the roads were designed and it would put me in immediate danger. You see, the guardrails aren’t there to take away our freedom, they are there to help us live into the fullness of it.
Guardrails are designed to provide boundaries that help us to function and drive safely. God’s guardrails are designed to help provide boundaries as we navigate the journey of life. I love what the Psalmist says, “I run in the path of your commands, for you have broadened my understanding.” Isn’t this a true statement? When we come to understand that the Good Shepherd intends good for us and that’s God’s commands aren’t meant to confine us, but to set us free, it allows us to run the race fully as God intended us to run. Sometimes walking along the path that God has set out for us can feel like confinement, but when we’re in it we realize that it’s for our good.
So, here’s the question for us: what are the guardrails that you’re bumping up against? Where are the areas of life that maybe your trust in the commands and guardrails of the Good Shepherd are wearing a bit thin? Trust the process. Even in difficulty, your path or journey is not the destination. The Good Shepherd is leading you to green pastures and still waters, but when we don’t see where we’re headed trust becomes difficult. Trust the Good Shepherd. He has good plans for you.