In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths. Prov. 3:6.
Next—let our confidence be uniform— all thy ways acknowledge him. Take one step at a time, every step under Divine warrant and direction. It is nothing less than self-idolatry to conceive that we can carry on even the ordinary matters of the day without his counsel. He loves to be consulted. Therefore take all thy difficulties to be resolved by him. Be in the habit of going to him in the first place—before self-will, self-pleasing, self-wisdom, human friends, convenience, expediency. Before any of these have been consulted go to God at once. Consider no circumstances too clear to need his direction. In all thy ways, small as well as great; in all thy concerns, personal or relative, temporal or eternal, let him be supreme. Who of us has not found the unspeakable “peace” of bringing to God matters too minute or individual to be entrusted to the most confidential ear? Abraham thus acknowledged God. Wheresoever he pitched a tent for himself there was always an altar for God. In choosing a wife for his son there was a singular absence of worldliness. No mention was made of riches, honour, beauty; only of what concerned the name and honour of his God. Thus did the wise man’s father in all his ways acknowledge God, asking counsel of him in all his difficulties, and never disappointed.
Now if we be weaned from the idolatry of making our bosom our oracle, and our heart our counsellor if in true poverty of spirit we go every morning to our Lord, as knowing not how to guide ourselves for this day; our eye constantly looking upward for direction, the light will come down. He shall direct thy paths. We need no new revelations or visible tokens. Study the word with prayer. Mark the Divine Spirit shedding light upon it. Compare it with the observation of the providences of the day; not judging by constitutional bias (a most doubtful interpreter), but pondering with sober, practical, reverential faith. Let the will be kept in a quiet, subdued, cheerful readiness, to move, stay, retreat, turn to the right hand onto the left, at the Lord’s bidding; always remembering that is best which is least our own doing, and that a pliable spirit ever secures the needful guidance. We may “be led,” for the exercise of our faith, “in a way that we know not” (Isa. 42:16) —perhaps a way of disappointment, or even of mistake. Yet no step well prayed over will bring ultimate regret. Though the promise will not render us infallible; our very error will be overruled for deeper humiliation and self-knowledge; and thus even this mysterious direction will in the end be gratefully acknowledged, “He led me forth in the right way.” (Ps. 107:7) Charles Bridges