Isaiah 45:2 "I will go before you and level the exalted places, I will break in pieces the doors of bronze and cut through the bars of iron,
The KJV reads “I will make the crooked places straight” to read this passages it is easy to see that the Lord is promising to make the high places reachable, the crooked places straight, break down barriers, and cut through excuses. Many people read this and think, “oh yeah, I am in!” I follow the Lord, and the Lord will make my life easy……..sorry to be the one to break it to those people, but that is not what was just promised in this passage. Another idea taken out of context is the idea that the Lord just promised me to take me where I want to go on this easy new road…….yeah…..here again….no so much!
There is no doubt that the Lord will make the way clear by leveling and straightening the road, but He did not promise that He was going to remove all of the obstacles along the way. He said He would break down barriers, and cut through bars, those would be things that we might not be able to do on our own, however the day to day stuff, the interactions with others, the hard choices we make, the difficult times, and seasons of doubt. Those are all still there, and they are all still ours. Furthermore, often once the path does become clear, it becomes very evident that where the path leads, is nowhere near where we wanted to go.
I say these things not to discourage, but to encourage you. You see God is with you, He is working right now on your behalf, but you have to have faith that if He has left something in your path, then it is something that you can deal with, overcome, and destroy. If you see where you are heading and it is not where you wanted or expected to go, you have to realize that what you thought would bring you happiness, will be eclipsed by the true joy that the Lord has in store for you. To give you some examples. I am a pretty fit guy. I try to eat pretty healthy, go to the gym regularly, and lead a generally healthy lifestyle. I expect that I will have a pretty healthy life to come…..nope, wrong answer, despite my best efforts I have found that I still have health issues, ones that will require even more effort on my part. Not exactly what I had planned. I have a friend that started off with a degree in psych, and is now a lawyer for a non-profit, a friend that went to school for engineering, and is now a Minister. You see God made the road straight, but it is still a though road, and the destination changes to where He needs you, not where you want to go. 8 years ago, I would have laughed had you told me that I would be writing this today. Yet, as it stands now, I can’t imagine doing anything else.
All of this is to simply say that we cannot afford to live on our timeline, by our rules, heading to our destination. God will straighten the path, and clear the “impossible barriers” but then we must walk by faith. Knowing that anything left in our path, we can handle, any difficulty we come up against is nothing more than The Lord leaving the light work to us. When our lives don’t go the way we planned, it is not the Lord making it difficult, it is the devil trying to knock us off the path. Living by faith, is not just saying “oh sure I believe in the Christ. You see…..even the devil believes in Jesus Christ. Living by faith is not just saying I trust in God, as we continue to fight against His will. Living in faith is standing in front of the Goliaths of the world with nothing but a sling. It is walking square into the difficulties in our life knowing that not only will we survive, but we will be victorious. He has brought the high places down, He has straightened the crooked places, and broken down doors, and cut the bars…now all we have to do is walk in faith, and if we can’t walk, then we crawl, and if we can’t crawl, then Christ himself will lift us up and carry us. Know this, God did not go through the trouble of straightening the road, only to make this life harder on you. He did not send His Son to die for us, only to turn around and say that you are not worth the trouble. You are important, you are loved, you are needed, and you are stronger, faster, and more worthy than what you give yourself credit for. Take on the hardships that come, walk through the season of doubt. Know that even though you might not have seen yourself going in the direction that path might lead….that is exactly where the Lord needs you…..and yes, yes you can do it.