I don’t run.
I’m not entirely convinced that running is that good for you. Too many ‘things’ that wiggle, jiggle, flap and bounce.
Walking, though, is a good thing.
But walking is a funny thing, too.
I’ve been walking in a quest to be healthier. It’s funny how I now notice other people walking. Kinda like the red car theory – you tell people not to think about red cars and suddenly, they’re every where. But not really; they were always there. You just begin to notice them more. Same thing if you buy a red car. Suddenly it seems you see red cars at every turn.
Back to this walking thing. Some people are what we call pigeon-toed. (The correct term is in-toeing.) Others are slew-footed (a terrible term we used as children, but the correct term is out-toeing.) Still others walk with limps, skips and hops. My neighbor takes three steps, stops, stands and takes three more. He moves very slowly, but I applaud his continuous effort.
As Christians we are called to walk, not to run. As a matter of fact, we read in Ecclesiastes 9:11 that the race is not to the swift. But we read also in Colossians 1:10 that we are to walk worthy of the Lord.
That latter Scripture is one that I’ve been pondering.
What does that look like – walking worthy? The Scripture continues and says we not only are to walk worthy, but to please Him in all respects. It is that simple three letter word “all” that gave me the most insight. First, let’s get it clear that we can never earn God’s love and this Scripture is not about us trying to walk in a way that earns us anything or in a way that proves that we are worth or deserving of anything. It also does not mean that we walk so that God becomes obligated to acknowledge us or that God is somehow enriched because of us – in the same way that a skilled surgeon is “worth” a lot to a hospital or a knowledgeable leader is “worth” a lot to a school.
Remember that the Scripture not only said to walk worthy of the Lord but to walk to please Him in all respects. Hebrews 11:6 teaches us that without faith it is impossible to please Him. Consider these Scriptures together, and walking worthy means to walk – act, behave, exist in a way that shows how worthy and gracious our God is. Walking worthy means walking by faith.
Let’s go a little further.
Walking is, for most of us, an everyday act. Whether walking to work, walking in our yard or walking around our house. And because it is such a common act, I believe Colossians is telling us that in all our acts, all our doing, all our being, all our thinking, all our speaking, all our choosing…, we are to exhibit our faith in God. This is walking worthy to please in all respects.
If you are not careful, you can struggle with Scriptures such as Colossians 1:10, so let’s talk about what walking worthy does not mean. It doesn’t mean walking perfectly. As we walk worthy, in faith we walk in step with the Lord and in the shadow of His grace remembering that He alone is worthy.
The walking that I’ve been doing to better my health is not for the faint of heart. My friend and I walk miles – one, two, three. We’ve not made a continuous four mile walk yet, though I know that some days we have walked that and more in totality of steps. We’ve walked in the hot summer heat and humidity. We’ve walked in the rain. We’ve walked mornings and evenings. It’s not always fun, but it is for our good.
Walking worthy is not for the faint of heart but it, too, is for our good. The really good news is that we do not walk alone. God has sent His Holy Spirit to be our Helper and to walk along side us (John 14:26). The same Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the grave enables us and equips us to walk worthy of His call.
Finally, understand that just as our human gaits are different – remember in-toeing, out-toeing – so our Christian walks may appear different. Do not compare your walk to another’s. Colossians 2:6 says, “As you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk with Him.” I believe that Scripture tells us two things: (1) “As you have received” meaning, “Now that you have received,” you are to walk with the Lord, but also (2) “As you have received” meaning “The unique gift He has given you guides you” as you walk with the Lord. The latter I read much as I read Romans 12:6-8 and 1 Corinthians 12:4 that we, as Christians, are given different gifts. We are given different walks, but all are walks of faith and all are to walk pleasing to the Lord.
How’s your walk?
THIS WEEK reflect on your personal walk. Are you walking worthy? Just as you need to prepare for a physical walk (proper shoes, right outfit, water…), you must prepare to walk worthy to please the Lord in all respects. The first preparation is a surrendered heart and relationship with Jesus Christ. If you do not know Christ as your personal Savior, visit the Salvation page (tab at the top of this page). Pray to receive Christ as ruler of your Life, and He will send His Holy Spirit to walk along side you.
If you are saved, reflect to determine if anything is hindering your walk. We choose walking paths that are smooth and obstacle free. Nothing like a twisted ankle because you stepped on an uneven surface, rock or twig. There an be obstacles in our spiritual walks, too, and sometimes we place them; sometimes we embrace them – addiction to television, busyness, overextending ourselves, video games… Identify and address your obstacles.
Lastly, reflect on the uniqueness of your walk. Are you trying to walk in someone else’s shoes? Trying to be like your pastor? Trying to be like a television evangelist? Trying to be like someone you have deemed great? Walk the way and in the way that God’s Holy Spirit calls and leads you. If you are not sure of or do not understand your walk, pray and ask God to reveal His will for you.