The young man completed his college degree and was ready to start what he knew would be a successful business career. A job offer was extended and accepted from a company that recognized young talent. The demands were excessive and the hours were long. The promotions, pay raises and new opportunities had him moving up the career ladder at a good pace. All that was happening was in stride with his goal to be president of the company within 15 years.
The religious background in the home he grew up in provided some grounding in faith. He knew he was to take responsibility for the gifts he had been given. He had done that religiously but now pride of his success and accomplishments was evident. He began to realize he was in stride with the world but not with God.
After he became the father of Methuselah, Enoch walked faithfully with God 300 years and had other sons and daughters. … Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away. – Genesis 5:22&24. As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind. – 2Kings 11. Enoch and Elijah are the only two men we know of in scripture that did not experience physical death in this world. All we know of Enoch is that he was the father of Methuselah and that he “walked faithfully with God.” Elijah on the other hand was a great prophet whom we know much about. God used him powerfully to, among other things, withhold rain from the land, slay 450 prophets of Baal and convince King Ahab that there was only one true God. Elijah was in stride with God. So how are we to walk faithfully, in stride with God? Jesus said, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.” (John 14:23). To keep His word calls for listening well to what the Holy Spirit says through His word and obeying, all by His grace and for His glory. These are steps in the right direction to walk faithfully in stride with God.
The young man was sensitized to the level of focus he had on himself, his performance and his success. The Lord reminded him of the most important gifts – the relationship with Him, the relationship with his wife and the relationships in family. Success is not a bad thing unless it becomes a god. King Ahab, exposed by Elijah, provided an excellent example of how serving multiple gods does not work out so well. Similarly, the young man was worshiping the gods of success, the almighty dollar and status. By the grace of the one true God, his heart was turned to begin a faithful walk in stride with Him as the man, husband and father the Lord expected him to be.
Prayer guide: Lord, thank You for Your Word and the examples of Enoch and Elijah. With Enoch, You introduced a new dimension of manhood referencing how he “walked faithfully with God”. And with Elijah, You provided quite the history of a man walking faithfully in stride with you. Lord, I have fallen well short of these wonderful men of You. I have been more focused on running the rat race in this world. Forgive me. Help me slow down and enjoy a walk with You. Enable a spiritual maturity to walk faithfully in stride with You this day, to glorify You in my marriage, family, church and beyond. Amen.
A faithful father strives to walk faithfully in stride with God.