Dr. Calvin Metcalf
WALKING WITH GOD
Walking with God is a beautiful way of describing our Christian pilgrimage. "A closer walk with God" is the essence of our daily journey with Him. Even though we struggle to make this a goal of our lives, we often fail to be where God desires. We find ourselves in the awkward position of walking more by ourselves than walking with God.
There are times in our walk with the Lord that we tend to walk ahead of Him. We become impatient with His slower pace and move on with what we assume is a better gait toward our goal. It is more like a race with God than a walk. We rush to conclusions. We hurry up our prayers. Rather than wait for clearer signals we compose our own agenda for the living of our days. In our haste to get where we are going we want God to quickly bless our plans. Walking ahead of God we tend to get exhausted. Because we do not wait upon the Lord we do not "mount up on wings as eagles." We do not run without getting weary and we grow faint in our walk. Like children who refuse to hold their parent's hand at a busy intersection we expose ourselves to much danger when we get ahead of God.
There are also times in our walk with God that we walk behind Him. We drag our feet. We lose interest in the things of God. Our affection becomes focused on things of the world. The church and our Christian witness become a burden rather than a lift. We take out our disappointment with people on God. When He does not fix every problem to our liking we withdraw. We do a little spiritual pouting. Even though we straggle far behind we want to keep Him in sight. We hear Him calling us onward and upward, but somehow the demands of a closer walk are too much. We give passive respect rather than passionate devotion in our walk with God.
Furthermore, there are times when in our walk with the Lord we walk all over Him. We trample His grace. We take advantage of His goodness. We expect Him to be merciful yet we are cruel. We expect Him to forgive our sins, but we refuse to forgive those who sin against us. We want the benefits of His blessings and His church without making a serious commitment to either. We want God, but we want Him on our own terms. We stomp around Calvary and wonder why He does not come down from the cross and save us from the discomfort of having to identify with His death. Perhaps we want what God offers more than we want God.
Let us, therefore, not walk ahead of God. Let us not walk behind God. Neither let us walk all over God. Let us walk with God at the pace He chooses.
Dr. Calvin S. Metcalf, is an alumnus and long-time trustee of Carson-Newman University. Throughout his career, including international preaching missions and authoring several books, he has served as
an influential pastor and community leader. In retirement he has continued to serve as interim pastor for several churches. The Institute is pleased that will be sharing his uplifting, insightful, and creative devotions with us every two weeks.