Cornbread Hill. This was not just a hill, it was a community. Cornbread Hill taught me about loyalty, hard work, and the importance of simplicity.
Some of my fondest childhood memories take me back to Mamaw Murphy’s house, playing outside with my cousins. Our daily adventures would begin as soon as breakfast was over. With an unlimited amount of Kool-Aid, there was no terrain our bicycles couldn’t conquer. We knew every inch of that hill and the surrounding mountain. The forts and club areas we constructed, transported our imagination to a distant world.
We were loyal to one another, and we worked hard with a communal focus. These attributes created our simplistic, happy place.
One summer, our cousin Tanya who lived in Michigan, came for a visit. On her first full day on Cornbread Hill, we exposed her to our adventurous schedule. During one of our many scheduled hikes, Tanya realized that she was not wearing the appropriate shoes for the outdoor requirements. We assured her that she could endure the tasks at hand with our assistance. We continued along our path, with the destination of our fort close in sight. Again, Tanya urged us to stop. Her northern outdoor knowledge did not apply to the southeastern terrain. She was having difficulty navigating and enduring the path. She yelled, “Guys, stop! There are no hills in Michigan.” We all chuckled, and during our family get-togethers, that memory is one always remembered. Now, 35 years later, her response makes perfect spiritual sense. She was in unfamiliar territory, with unsuitable gear, and was having difficulty enduring the hike. She was unprepared, uncomfortable, and unfamiliar.
As believers, how often do we find ourselves unprepared, uncomfortable, and in unfamiliar territory? When we start the hike of our faith journey with the wrong type of shoes, blisters and pain quickly form, creating a disquieting environment.
Tanya needed preparation for the task at hand as well as instruction to complete the journey. Similar to our Christian walk, preparation and instruction guide our walk and our climb, but we must remain focused on our goal-Jesus.
God has a plan for our lives and a distinct path for us to walk. Our road map is designed specifically for our role in the body of Christ.
How often do we try to help Him with the directions, changing the route as we go?
I am guilty of questioning God and His intentions. I act as if I have a better plan than Him and I usually go ahead of Him and “do” instead of waiting in obedience. (Raise your hand if you do the same thing.)
“Mark out a straight path for your feet; stay on the safe path.” Proverbs 4:26
Let’s unfold three ways to mark out a straight path.
1. Seek God through prayer. We have to humble ourselves and admit that becoming more like Christ is often unfamiliar and uncomfortable territory. We need preparation and guidance as we make prayer part of our daily routine. If you struggle with having a regular prayer life, add it to an activity that you ALWAYS do like taking your medicine. Every morning or evening when you take your medicine, pray. After a few times, you will find yourself wanting to pray more and will find more activities to attach prayer to.
2. Seek instruction. Go to the Word. Read it. Do what it says, no matter how unusual it seems. For me, I have always struggled with choosing where to begin reading. I remember when I would open my Bible, place my finger on a random page and begin reading the closest verse. There are several devotional books and reading plans to help guide you as you seek daily instruction.
I want to share with you a wonderful resource I have recently been exposed to. It’s called the YouVersion Bible app .It’s a free app that has thousands of devotional and reading plans to choose from. Regardless of where you are on your journey, there is a plan available for every stage and unfamiliar territory you find yourself in.
3. Stay on the course, even when you want to sit down or venture off the path predestined for you. This is difficult to achieve without Biblical Community. We must have encouragement and accountability. Call a friend and ask them to text you every day asking if you have prayed and spent time in God’s Word. Ask a friend to complete a plan on the YouVersion Bible app with you. The ladies in my life group do this each week. We hold one another accountable in marking out a straight path to Jesus.
Obedience. It often times makes you feel unprepared, unfamiliar, and uncomfortable, but it is necessary to become more like Christ. Be strong and courageous. Remain loyal to one another, work hard with a communal focus, and create a simplistic happy place, directing you on the straight predestined path God put before you.
Time to Unfold
- Read God’s Word: Today, sit down and schedule a time to pray and read God’s Word.
- Pray: Tomorrow, do it, even if it’s not at your “scheduled” time. Don’t go to bed until you have talked to God and read about Him.
- Do: If you venture off course, get back and try again. You will get there. We are on this journey together.
- Repeat. Be strong and courageous. You are walking a predestined path.
Thankful for the lessons of Cornbread Hill,
Heather McVey, a speaker and accidental writer, has a passion for connecting the dots of God’s Word. Her mission is focused on teaching women how to unfold the scriptures within their own life, encouraging and equipping them to walk worthy of their calling. Learn more about her in Meet Heather.