Tripping Through Life

“They stumble, being disobedient to the word…” 1 Peter 2:8b

Can you remember the last time you tripped? For me it was yesterday, walking along the sidewalk of Boston, on my way into work. There I was meandering along the path I had travelled a hundred times before. Busses and cars were driving by, shops (mostly restaurants) line the sidewalks, all mostly closed at this still early hour. Over my shoulders was slung my heavy backpack containing various files, a laptop, my umbrella, and other necessities of the day.

Then my foot hit something. Maybe an uneven spot in the sidewalk. I didn’t have time to notice. I started falling forward and my legs started running to try and prevent the eventual toppling that was about to occur. I couldn’t catch up with the pull of gravity, and down I went after about 6-8 leaps forward to try and prevent the crash. It could have been much worse. No major injury to myself or to others. And there were precious few around to watch my morning tumble which would only have added to the embarrassment of my clumsy collapse.

This morning I read our text, “They stumble, being disobedient to the word.” It occurred to me that, sadly, many go through this life tripping all the time. They find themselves frequently in messed up situations, troublesome trials, and all sorts of tangled webs. Their lives seem to always be falling apart. Nothing seems to be working out for them or going their way.

One possible reason for such stumbling is simply a lack of obedience to God. Transgressions trip men up. Sins are slippery things. Of the disobedient and rebellious persons Deuteronomy 32:35 says “their foot shall slip in due time.” We are told in Proverbs 13:15 says that “the way of the unfaithful is hard.” And in Proverbs 4:19 “The way of the wicked is like darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble.” But we know. Most such stumbling is a result of disobedience, “they stumble, being disobedient to the word.”

In contrast, we are told that “Your word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path (Psalm 119:105).” Through listening to the Lord and heeding His voice in Scripture “you will walk safely in your way, and your foot will not stumble (Proverbs 3:23).”

Let us make it a point to listen carefully to the Lord, and do His will. Read your Bibles asking the Lord, “Lord, how shall I live?” His Word will direct our steps.

We all do a fair amount of tripping don’t we? Let’s also be there to pick one another up when we fall, for as James points out, “we all stumble in many things (James 3:2).” And most of all, be sure that you don’t trip eternally by failing to believe and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. He is, for many, a stone of stumbling. Don’t trip here! Be sure you have built your life upon Christ. Be sure He is your foundation. Be sure of your saving interest in Him. “Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble (2 Peter 1:10).”

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