Have you ever taken a walk with someone you loved? Maybe held the hand of your young child as you strolled through the woods or across an open meadow? Perhaps a romantic stroll on the beach with that special someone? There’s something special about going for a walk, and experiencing life together. When Scripture says that Enoch “walked with God,” I think we all understand this was not in the physical, literal sense. But there is something so symbolic and special about the figure of walking that it reminds us of living together, thinking together, spending quality time together.
John said, “if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanseth us from all sin,” (1 Jn. 1:7). To walk in the light is to live in the light of God’s word, to allow God to direct our paths, and to order our daily decisions through his word, (Prov. 3:5-6; Ps. 119:105). What will happen to us if we walk with God throughout our life?
1. If we walk with God, we will spend quality time with him. This means we will read and meditate upon his word. We will stay with the Psalmist, “Thy word have I laid up in my heart, that I might not sin against thee, (Ps. 119:11). It also means that we will speak with him in prayer, fervently and frequently. And these prayers will not be mere memorized recitations or impersonal habits. We will pray as a child might speak to a trusted father, holding his hand while walking together through life. Worshiping God with the church becomes a privilege, not a drudgery, an unpleasant duty or simply an item on a checklist.
2. If we walk with God, we will be protected from straying into sin. If we are walking with God, the only way to get caught up in sin is to break free of the loving hand clasp. In essence we say to God, “Wait here in this lovely meadow while I run over into the dark mud without you.” Or, “I am ashamed for you to come along, for I am going to get dirty now.” Walking with God keeps us out of trouble. As so beautifully expressed by W. Elmo Mercer in 1953, “At times I feel my faith begin to waiver, when up ahead I see a chasm wide; It’s then I turn and look up to my Savior, I am strong when he is by my side. Each step I take I know that he will guide me; to higher ground he ever leads me on. Until some day the last step will be taken, each step I take just leads me closer home.”
3. If we walk with God, we will always have the pleasure of the finest company. Just as “evil companions corrupt good morals,” (1 Cor. 15:33), our heavenly travel Companion fills our minds with uplifting delights. We enjoy being in his company. Like the two travelers with our Lord on the road to Emmaus, we say to ourselves, “Was not our heart burning within us, while he spoke to us in the way, while he opened to us the Scriptures,” (Lk. 24:32). Traveling with him is a noble pleasure. When we observe what is happening all around us in this sinful world, we are reminded of how blessed and joyous it is to humbly walk with God.
4. If we walk with God, we will be stronger and better people as a result. It’s an experience that will lift us up, and never drag us down. It will give us courage to rise above our anxieties and fears. “God, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places,” (Hab.3:19ESV). Walking with God is an exhilarating experience which taps our greatest potential. As the giver of our talents and abilities, he challenges us to use them—and confidently encourages us to do our best. Walking with God means striving to please him; learning to give our all, and knowing that he supports us as we do.
5. If we walk with God, we will be confident of where we are going. This Guide knows where we are going. He knows the way, and we can trust him not to mislead us or get us lost. There are times in life when the path gets very dark and difficult. If we are relying only on our own guidance, we may find the rivers of life drying up. But Gods leads us “beside the still waters” and ultimately through the “valley of the shadow of death.” Walking with God gives us confidence in our final destination. Have you taken a nice, long walk with God lately? Are you faithfully walking with him today? These amazing benefits are some of the blessings which result for those who do.
-by Robert C. Veil, Jr.