Welcome to Daily Steps!
A weekly devotional message with daily scripture readings and prayer prompts to help you spend time with, and draw closer to, Jesus.
Psalm 119:105 — Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
A Light for the Path Ahead
One of the miracles of early childhood is the insatiable curiosity little children have is to know more about the world around them. They instinctively seek out opportunities to learn in each waking moment, fascinated by every little thing. For small children, learning how to master the little things in life is neither insulting nor boring. They don’t scoff at going to kindergarten because they think it’s beneath them. Neither do they reject a chance to ride their scooters around the neighborhood because they think they’re entitled to take a trip around the world. Children in all of their innocence and humility can teach us, adults, a great deal about seeing, learning, and following God’s path for our lives.
In Luke 16:10 Jesus tells His disciples, “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.” The trouble is that most of us think that as we age, we eventually outgrow the “little things.” Scripture soundly rejects that notion, advising us to become all the more vigilant and focused on allowing the Holy Spirit to reveal more and more “little things” to pay attention to — both the good and the bad ones that God wants us to see and do something about.
A simple, yet profound illustration of this truth is found in Psalm 119:105, which says “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Since we live in an era where creating light in the dark is taken for granted (unless your power goes out!), the full meaning of this Scripture is often missed. Anyone who lived before Thomas Edison invented the light bulb back in 1878, would’ve understood the powerful implication of this verse immediately. Seeing the road ahead in the dark was very difficult, if not impossible, with a candle or even a torch. The most that a nighttime traveler could hope for was to see only one step — less than an arm’s length — ahead of him. He wouldn’t be able to see an upcoming turn on the path until it became the next step illuminated by the light. Each little step of faith following the light was crucial. It was pointless to wait to move until all obstacles could be seen or the destination came into view. One small step at a time along the path — in obedience to the light — was the only way to complete the journey.
Taking that one small step in obedience is what Jesus is trying to say to His disciples and to us as His followers today. If we want God to show us the path that He has for us, we need to see the little things He is trying to bring to our attention around us every day. Evidence of God’s love, care, and power is always on display. If we want God to teach us how to walk on the path He’s called us to follow, we need to be humble enough to do even the smallest of things He asks us to do. No matter how long you’ve been a follower of Jesus, the little or ordinary things often turn out to have the biggest impact. If we want God to lead us, we need to exchange our desire for control to delight in taking one step at a time without knowing what’s around the bend. Like a child fascinated by the light, Jesus is asking us to trust Him one step at a time, be thankful for what’s immediately in front of us, and be willing to help others along the way.
Daily Bible Readings with Prayer Prompts
As you contemplate these passages throughout the week, make time to pray before you read them and then again afterward. In each reading, ask God to show you what the verses mean specifically to you. God’s Word is alive, so even if you’re familiar with these Scriptures, approach them with an expectant heart and an open mind. God wants to converse with you.
Monday - Read Psalm 119:67-68. Sometimes God allows hardship and suffering in our lives to bring us back to Him or to teach us how to depend on Him more. Oswald Chambers once said, "We all know people who have been made much meaner and more irritable and more intolerable to live with by suffering: it is not right to say that all suffering perfects. It only perfects one type of person — the one who accepts the call of God in Christ Jesus.” Think about something you are struggling with right now, and ask Jesus to help you gain His perspective on it, transforming the obstacles in front of you to opportunities that will help you grow closer to your Heavenly Father.
Tuesday - Read Psalm 27:14, Psalm 25:3a, and James 5:7-8. God also uses times of waiting to teach us and prepare us for the next curve in the path. The day-to-day times of waiting in our lives are real opportunities for divine training. When we shift our perspective from waiting as an arduous, painful time-waster to time well-spent being spiritually productive, then we’ve already won half the battle. Spend time thanking God for making you wait on something you long for, and ask Him to help you find patience and strength in His presence.
Wednesday - Read Psalm 119:9-16 and Romans 10:17. Hearing and knowing the voice of God takes time, but the Bible is the best training manual we have for teaching our hearts to know what His voice sounds like. AW Tozer said, “God will speak to the hearts of those who prepare themselves to hear.” Ask God to prepare your heart to hear His voice today. Re-read today’s Scriptures again, and then ask Him to help you have a teachable heart that longs to spend time with Him every day. Pick one phrase or verse that stands out the most, and meditate on it for a few minutes. Ask God to show you why He’s drawing you to that phrase or verse.
Thursday - Read Isaiah 55:8-9. Many times we cannot sense God’s leading or hear His voice because we are expecting Him to speak in a certain way or solve our problems the way we would prefer. As you ponder this passage from Isaiah, ask the Holy Spirit to search your heart and reveal any ways in which you are putting God in a box or limiting His movement in your life because of your own logic, plans, agenda, pride, or expectations. Then spend time asking Him to replace your desires and thoughts with His. Ask Him to open your heart to His presence in ways you wouldn’t expect.
Friday - If possible, go outside and find a quiet place to read Psalm 29 and 1 Kings 19:11-12. In these two passages, we are given very different descriptions of what God’s voice sounds like. Sometimes we may hear Him loud and clear. Other times it will take many sessions of sitting quietly before Him listening in prayer and reading the Word before we hear the “still small voice.” Take some time today to simply praise Him for who He is, and the fact that He loves you enough to personally speak to you.
It's Never Too Late to Take Every Thought Captive — If you are struggling with anxiety or discouragement during this time of shelter-in-place, you may find this two-part essay especially helpful. It was written by someone prone to anxiety herself, our own Community Team Study Guide Writer, Sara Goetz.
READ PART 2 OF THE ESSAY