Recently, my husband and I visited our cabin in the woods for a getaway. We hadn’t been there all winter and the snow was several feet deep. We needed to break a trail from the main road to our cabin through several feet of untouched snow. As I stepped into the drifts of white, fluffy snow with my snowshoes I was surprised to find myself sinking more than a foot into the snow. Each step was an effort. I would step and sink down to my knees, then pull my other foot up out of the knee deep snow, swing it hip high in front of me only to sink again. Each step was a struggle and I was sweating in minutes.
Several times I lost my balance and fell into the snow bank, struggling to regain my balance. My husband helped me up, dusted me off, and set me back on the path. There were moments when our destination felt too far away, the struggle too difficult, the effort too much, despite the beautiful sunny day. At one point I looked forward and saw how far we had to go and felt discouraged.
After several frustrating falls, we switched places and my husband (without snowshoes) led, and I followed to pack down the snow. I quickly discovered following a trail already broken was still hard work, but much easier than being the lead person breaking through the pristine snow.
Life can be like this. If I am going forward on my own strength and breaking a trail it can be very hard, frustrating, and discouraging. But if I let God lead me, He breaks the trail and although the path is still difficult, it is easier to follow than to lead. Like my husband, God is there to help me back up, dust me off, and set me back on the path.
There were moments when I had to stop, catch my breath, and rest. Moments when I stopped to look around at the beauty of the woods, the snow on the trees, and the blue, sunny sky. When I glanced behind us it gave me hope to see how far we’d come.
Progress isn’t always evident in the moment of the struggle and its easy to get discouraged. But following God’s path is easier than trying to do it in my own strength.
What struggle are you facing today? Are you trying to do it on your own? Let God take the lead.
Are you discouraged at the seemingly slow progress towards your goal? Pause. Breathe. Look around and enjoy the beauty. Glance back to see how far you’ve come. Probably farther than you think.
Praise God He is faithful. He will lead, if we let him. Follow the God that breaks the trail before you and encourages you on the journey. You are not alone. He loves you and is happy to lead.