It is best to avoid things that might make you fall when hiking. Going around creeks with a strong current is better than going through them. It is safer to step on dry rocks rather than grimy ones. Walking on beaten dirt paths is preferable to muddy hills and slopes. Too much weight in a backpack can cause you to topple over, too.
David the psalmist certainly understood the importance of walking on stable and non-slippery ground: “My steps have held fast to your paths; my feet have not slipped” (Psalm 17:5). Of course, David wasn’t talking about hiking—he was talking about living. And what he meant is crystal clear: walking the righteous path of obedience is the way to avoid things that might cause a damaging fall.
You must keep your feet fixed to the path of righteousness and turn aside from the slippery and unstable ground of sin. You must bypass the strong current of temptations that threaten to sweep you under. Your feet will be caught in the snares of deception and you will fall into the pits of guilt if you venture off the Godward road to glory and walk the easy road. And you will surely fall carrying around the heavy backpack of unconfessed sin and unprayed-for-burdens.
Unfortunately, sometimes we do fall. Thankfully, God doesn’t leave His people on the ground. He will catch and hold you up: “When I thought, “My foot slips,” your steadfast love, O LORD, held me up” (Psalm 94:18).
Bible Gleanings is a widely-read weekend devotional column, written for the Murray Ledger & Times in Calloway County, Kentucky.
Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their three dogs, Susie (Jack Russell), Aries (English Shepherd), and Dot (Bluetick Beagle).