When we are in challenging situations, we often only see the obstacles in front of us. We can’t see what is on the other side of the trees for they are blocking our view.

Then we realize, if we look at the situation from a different perspective, we see there is a path. There is a way. There is hope. (Note: the second picture was taken after I took two steps to the left of the first picture.)

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5.

We start down the path, but we can’t see the end from the beginning. In fact, it looks like a dead end.

“I (Jesus) am the way, the truth, and the life.” John 14:6.

But we keep putting one foot in front of the other, and we realize there still is a way. The path begins to straighten. There’s light at the end of the tunnel (and maybe a gorgeous lake too).

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6.

We keep going. We keep having faith. Eventually, we make it past the obstacles to the beauty on the other side.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11.

I started writing this post on a gorgeous, peaceful day at West Branch State Park over Labor Day weekend. I could easily continue to beat myself up over the fact that I didn’t get it posted then. OR I can look at it from a different perspective. I didn’t know the challenges I would face between then and now. I didn’t know the challenges my loved ones would face since that peaceful day. I am now in a better position to bring this post to completion and hopefully make a difference in someone’s life.

Jesus said in this world we would have trouble. Sometimes the trouble seems so huge, so unbearable, so hopeless, that all we see are the obstacles, the problems, the mistakes. We see no way out.

But as Dr. Dave Collings said in his amazing, life-changing sermon yesterday at Christ Church Columbia Station campus, we are never too far lost that the Good Shepherd cannot find us.

If you are in a difficult situation right now, if all you can see are the problems, the obstacles, the mistakes, the disappointments, the fear … Jesus sees you. He sees you right where you are. He loves you no matter what. He knows how to bring you back to his flock. There IS a way out. You just need to follow him, one step at a time.