Never walk blindly

Figure 1 - Romantically Unsuccessful Boy

Figure 1 - Romantically Unsuccessful Boy

I, like thousands of teenagers before me and thousands more after me, took part in the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme. I no longer have the little badge or the book because the only reason I did the scheme was to look good on my university applications and those days are long behind me. On the occasion of my Silver Award hike I fell ill with food poisoning, I will spare you the privilege of the details. Sadly, I stayed at home as the group of guys I had been on training hikes with set off on there exhibition in the beautiful Northern Irish sunshine (it does exist I promise).

Soon after I was informed by our instructor that I would be doing my final hike two weekends later with a group of girls. To the teenage boy that I was, best described as romantically unsuccessful (see figure 1 for evidence of why.) 2 and half days in the company of girls seemed like an opportunity for me to show myself as 'a bit of a catch.' It of course didn't work out that way. 

In a display of misplaced and naive misogyny I took the role of navigator, nobody else got a chance. I held the map and compass in my hand and with the certainty that only comes with teenage immaturity I stalked off towards a hill in the distance, the wrong hill. In under two hours we were well and truly lost. My navigating and female-impressing skills were less than impressive and far from effective. 

There is a life lesson in this tale of teenage woe. There is a loudly broadcast message in the western world; 'be true to yourself.' I am yet to really know what it really means but I do know this; that if you are anything like me you have moments of certainty in which you are wrong and moments of doubting what is clearly the right path. How easy it is to be over-sure of our ability to be right and to completely miss when we are correct. 

As I have been praying about our future together as a church I am reminded of that little verse in Psalm 119:105, 'Your word is a lamp to my feet; a light to my path. The writer of the Psalms knew well something I need to remind myself of all too often, that reading the Bible and listening for the voice of God found within its pages will guide us. Some how stories of the Hebrews, the disciples, letters, prophecies and songs will speak into our context and show us where to go. 

As we seek His path for us this month lets not neglect to listen for Him in the words of Scripture. Lets speak and pray together, lets discuss and dream but not at the expense of finding His still small voice in the Bible.