"You sift and search out my path and my lying down, and You are acquainted with all my ways."
Psalm 139:3 Amplified Bible
I love the Amplified Bible and the words it uses in Psalm 139:3. I picture God in heaven walking the path ahead of us and sifting out all the stones and sticks that may make us stumble along the way. My thinking is that if there's an obstacle still in your pathway after God's done sifting it, it's one of three things.
The first possibility is, you somewhere you got off the path of God's will and purpose and got on your own path. I don't think this can happen accidentally. Somewhere, you made a purposeful choice to not listen or not obey. So, in His great mercy God puts up roadblocks in hopes that you'll turn back to His path.
The second possible reason that there is an obstacle on your path is you're on the right path but God has allowed there to be an obstacle in your way for a purpose. Maybe He is delaying you at a certain spot until His perfect timing, maybe He is testing your trust in Him, maybe He's teaching you patience and endurance. All of those reasons don't make facing an obstacle easier or more enjoyable. But, God is intent on making you into the man or woman of God He created you to be. He is also a God who is big on divine appointments and His perfect timing. Both of those could be reasons He has you in a season that feels like delay.
The last reason there may be an obstacle on your path is that the enemy is trying to stop you. (For a Biblical example read Nehemiah and how the enemy tried to stop him from doing the work God had called him to do.) If that is the case, God is still in control of you and your path and wants to show Himself strong for you and through you. In Ephesians 3:10 we see that God uses us, (the church), to make known to the principalities and powers in the heavenly sphere His wisdom and power. There's never an enemy scheme or tactic that takes God by surprise or shocks Him. He wants to give you His power and wisdom to deal with it.
If you think you are dealing with an enemy induced hindrance first ask God to give you discernment about what you are dealing with. Simply ask, "Father, please show me if this obstacle is You trying to slow me down or lead me a different direction, or if it is the enemy trying to stop me." Once, you feel sure it's not God Himself you are fighting against, then put on the whole armor of God and stand strong. Get others to agree with you in prayer. Pray, pray, pray and then obey, obey, obey. Whatever you do, don't quit. Again, read the book of Nehemiah or other great Bible passages about people who were hindered by the enemy, but pressed through to victory. God won't waste your warfare, but is using even this to strengthen and train you. Remember, God allowed David to face the lion and the bear, which prepared him and gave him courage to face Goliath. Think back to a battle already won, an obstacle already overcome. Let the fact that God helped you through that embolden you to face this new obstacle.
Take comfort in the fact that anything on the path before you is known and seen by God. Then grab hold of His hand and this promise, because He will never, never, never let go of you. "...for He, God Himself has said, "I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. I will not, I will not, I will not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let you down or relax My hold on you! Assuredly not!" (Hebrews 13:5 Amplified Bible)
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