Wednesday, December 1, 2010

He maketh my feet like hinds' feet.....

"It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect. He maketh my feet like hinds' feet, and setteth me upon my high places. 
Psalm 18:32-33

"The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds' feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places."
Habakkuk 3:19

I've been wanting to read Hind's Feet On High Places so was happy when a friend loaned it to me.....then read through most of it sitting in front of the fire on Thanksgiving afternoon. It reminded me a bit of Pilgrim's Progress as it is also an allegory about a person following Christ, only in this story we have a young woman named Much-Afraid, rather than Bunyan's Christian.

  In the story, main character, Much-Afraid, takes a journey up a rocky mountainside for which she must develop “hinds’ feet” to reach the “high places.” She is encouraged on her way by the Chief Shepherd, who comes to her aid whenever she calls, and is accompanied by the companions he chose for her, Sorrow and Suffering. The theme of this book is crucifying your own will for that of your Lord. Every acceptance of His will is an altar of sacrifice that helps us to progress and mature in our walk with Him.

I, and probably you, could relate so much to this character as she travels along the shores of Loneliness, through the Valley of Loss, when the Shepherd leads her down, instead of up, the way she thinks she should be going, and as she is hounded and harassed by her relatives Resentment, Bitterness, and Self-Pity. Then when she learns the lessons of  Acceptance-with-Joy, and Bearing-with-Love, but the part that struck me the most was when the Shepherd asked her to sacrifice her desire for human love. Only when she was able to do that did Suffering and Sorrow turn to Peace and Joy.

I won't give away anymore of the story....but I do recommend it! I think it was helpful to try to apply the lessons Much-Afraid learned on her journey in my own life and maybe the same would be true for some of you. Remember, as the introduction states: the “High Places” are not meant to signify heaven or life after death, but the rewards God gives us during our lives here on Earth if we follow the path chosen for us. Another thing I liked about it was how much scripture she included...and the fact that she often did not include the reference- I liked the challenge of figuring out where it came from:-)

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"Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it."
Isaiah 55:6,8-1