When I was a child, I first learned to crawl. Next, I took baby steps. Soon, I was walking slowly and, thereafter, briskly. By age six, I ran faster than all other kids in my neighborhood. A couple of weeks after my sixth birthday, polio struck. With polio my running days were over for good.
After five years of physical therapy five days a week, I learned to take steps again. I could get to my destinations or reach my goals. It just took a little longer and with much greater effort.
Love is found by taking steps too and trusting God to show me and you the way. At age 22 I met Dorothy at a church retreat. A drive-in movie was our first date. Soon thereafter Dorothy invited me to come to her apartment for dinner. Dorothy warned me that her apartment was on the second floor. I needed to climb two flights of stairs to sit with her at the dinner table.
The evening came for me to ascend the stairs to her apartment. As I looked at the formidable flights of stairs for the first time, Dorothy said, “Jack, don’t worry. I will help you one step at a time.” I lifted my left foot up on the first step and stiffened my left leg. Dorothy held my right upper arm. She pushed my right side up in the air and forward. My right leg and foot swung forward and landed on the next step. The process of taking one step at a time with Dorothy’s help repeated itself until we were both on the balcony next to her front door.
After a few months of climbing the stairs to have dinner with her, to watch TV, to study, or play cards, I knew Dorothy was worth the effort. Unexpectedly, one day Dorothy said to me, “Jack, I signed a new lease at my apartment complex. It is on the ground floor.” Those steps to climb the stairs led me to find love and Dorothy’s love finding me.
We can all trust God to guide us to find the love of a husband, a wife, or a partner. How God does that is a mystery. The ways in which God orchestrates our steps are as limitless as the depth of God’s love for us.
The path God chose for me involved taking steps on stairs, steps which led to the woman I married. I will love Dorothy to the last beat of my heart. Taking steps together with the help of God is part an enduring successful and happy marriage. On the same path we have held on to one another and let the other have space. We have forgiven and given to the other. We have raised children and released them to be and become the children God created them to be. We have grieved those we’ve lost and been grateful for memories they left in our hearts.
We are older now but have never completely stepped out of childhood. We struggle to travel lighter and to simplify our days. We are in no hurry to take our final steps to climb the stairs to Heaven to find God’s eternal love. For now, Heaven can wait.
God has spoken in Scripture as to taking steps to find love on Earth and in Heaven.
The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.
He had a dream, and behold, a ladder was set on the earth with its top reaching to heaven; and behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it.
Let us pray.
God, I thank You for granting me my own will. I know that I can make my own plans. Yet, it is comforting to know that You determine my steps.
God, please help me to trust You. In following Your Word may my path lead to Your love on Earth. At my death may your angels help me climb the stairway to Heaven to find Your love forever. Amen
If you think Jack’s prayer helps you or will help someone you know, please forward it to them. Jack may never make millions selling books or writing prayers, but spreading God’s good news to others is reward enough for him.
Ann Boland, Jack’s Publicist