As this is a holiday weekend here I’ve had more spare time than usual, so today I decided to take myself to the local woods for a walk. As soon as I arrived there, I realised that it was during this very week in 2013 that I had walked there with a friend while Leah and Nic had their photoshoot done. Alison Hill did an amazing job of those photos and Leah loved them.
I was so emotionally fragile at that time (shortly after Leah had been diagnosed) and a walk in the woods with a friend was just what I needed. As all of these memories came flooding back I was glad that the woods were very quiet today. I needed to be alone with my thoughts. As I walked along I enjoyed taking photos of anything that caught my eye:
When I came to my favourite bench, I sat for a while and studied the photos that I had taken. Most of them were of the path. I reflected on this for a while, then I used my phone to look up Bible verses that mention the word ‘path’. I was somewhat surprised to discover that the word path is used quite often in the Bible. Here are some of the verses I found:
You make known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
Psalm 16:11 NIV
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.
Psalm 119:105 NIV
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV
Earlier today I had also read this excerpt from Streams in the Desert which mentions paths:
After coming home from my walk I looked in my diary to see exactly when I had taken Leah for her photoshoot and what I had written about the event – I had certainly been in a very distressed state that day due to all that was happening. As I glanced over some of my journal entries, my attention was suddenly caught by something I had written on the 5th January 2014 while I was sitting with Leah in the ICU in Belfast City Hospital. Leah’s diagnosis had recently changed from PCP pneumonia to probable pneumonitis. On the 4th January, one of the consultants had taken me aside and had spelled out in words of one syllable what the implications of this new diagnosis were i.e. that Leah was very unlikely to survive. I was still praying and believing for Leah to be healed but as I wrestled with God regarding all that was happening, I had transcribed some words of an old hymn into my journal:
Yea, choose the path for me, although I may not see,
The reason Thou dost will to lead me so.
I know the toilsome way will lead to realms of day,
Where I shall dwell with Thee, O mighty Saviour.
There is that ‘path’ word again, all of this serves to reinforce for me the truth of Job 23:10; “He knows the way that I take” and He is with me every step of the way.