Seventeenth Day: "In the paths of righteousness."
And what can this mean but right paths?
In the wilderness of the desert there are no raised paths, the paths being merely tracks. They may run in different directions, and be most confusing. There must therefore be one who may choose the right paths for us. This our Shepherd is pledged to do. There have been times when you thought God's way was not best; there was nothing for you but mystery. But remember, "All things work together for good," not always happiness, nor peace, nor prosperity, in the judgment of men, but always for good.
In a cotton-mill every part of the work in all the factory works together for cotton cloth. In your life all is for good if you are where God would have you be.
"Only do not judge God's ways whilst they are in progress. Wait till the plan is complete. Wait till the tapestry is finished and you can see the other side, where the pattern will be worked out. Wait till the silver paper is torn off the worsted work and the blending of the colors is disclosed. Wait till you have got out of the vale to the mountain brow. Wait till in the light of eternity God can call you aside and reveal to you his purposes. Meanwhile trust. All his ways are pleasantness and his paths peace."
Once again we say:—
The fact that you are in the world proves that you are indispensable to God, and the fact that you are where you are, if it has not been of your own choosing, proves that God needs you there to work out his plan.
You see only the "wrong side" of your life, like the weaver of tapestry. God sees the "right side," and weaves on, and shall until the work is ended.
"My life is but the weaving
Between my God and me;
I may but choose the colors
He weaveth steadily.
Full oft he weaveth sorrow,
And I in foolish pride
Forget he sees the upper,
And I the under, side."
Suggestions for To-day.
1. Trust for today, where you cannot understand him.
2. Remember he said, "What I do thou knowest not now, but thou shalt know hereafter." Wait for the hereafter.
3. Tell him over and over, as the way seems closing up before you, that you will never doubt him.
From The Secret of a Happy Day: Quiet Hour Meditations by J. Wilbur Chapman. Boston: United Society of Christian Endeavor, ©1899.