" 'Make level paths for your feet,' so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed."(Hebrews 12:13) Dr. Charles Ringma was my personal mentor when I was at Asian Theological Seminary. After many years since my graduation, I still receive spiritual nourishment from him through his books and devotional writings. This morning, I read the following from Dr. Ringma as part of my devotion:
"... we do sometimes run the race of life with unnecessary handicaps or traverse over especially difficult terrain. The writer to the Hebrews suggests that we need to throw off needless burdens (Hebrews 12:1) and make paths level especially for the lame among us ... We need to learn from God's dealings in our lives and to lay things aside, otherwise we have to go over the same ground again and again. Moreover, we must cultivate a life free from impurity (12:14). This has to do with maintaining and developing godly values, not only in our thought life and our relationships but also in our work and business. A life without holiness and moral integrity will only burden us down. It will also sidetrack us. And sadly it will repay us doubly in disappointment. The writer furthermore challenges us to live free from bitterness (12:15). This aids our progress in the present and makes us open to the future. Bitterness only binds us to the past with its hurts and disappointments. Not only does it destroy relationships, it also poisons the well of our own being. ... a level path is secured when we take to our hearts whatever blessing God has given us. We dare not reject the grace of God (12:16-17). What this means is that we learn to embrace thankfully what God has given us .... "