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  • Writer's pictureBarbara Byers

Stumbling

Updated: Oct 13, 2021

James 3:2 tells us that we all stumble in many ways. All of us - we all misstep, blunder, slip up, flounder and trip. Things just seem to get in the way! Jesus said stumbling blocks will inevitably come (Matt. 18:7; Lk. 17:1). They enter through the circumstances of life and through others who offend us (Matt. 16:23). Also, there are things within us that cause us to stumble (Matt. 18:8-9). For instance, we misstep when we are disobedient to the word, and when we are offended with the Lord and He has become a “stone of stumbling” to us (1 Pet. 2:8; Jn. 6:61). Our own iniquities become a stumbling block to us (Ezek. 14:3; 18:30), and our pride causes us to stumble (Prov. 16:18). When we stay in the darkness, we lose our footing and we don’t even realize what we are stumbling over at times (Jn. 11:10; Prov. 4:19)

What can keep us from stumbling? Proverbs 3:25-26 tells us that when we make the Lord our confidence, when we know He is with us, we are kept from faltering and being ensnared. As we listen to his word and love his word (Jn. 16:1; Ps. 119:165), as we practice the truth (2 Pet. 1:10), we are kept securely in His path. As we wait on Him, we don’t flounder, but are renewed in our strength (Isa. 40:30ff). Jude tells us (1:24) that the Lord is the One who is able to keep us from stumbling, making us stand in His presence with joy. He will deliver us from our faltering and stumbling so that we may walk with Him in the light (Ps. 56:13; Ps. 116:8).

And if we stumble, we have the remedy: the Lord is at our side. Even when we stumble and fall repeatedly, we can rise in His strength (Prov. 24:16). His mercy is so great that He knows we will stumble in many ways. But when we turn again to Him, receiving His abundant forgiveness, we find that we can walk securely, unimpeded, in ways that please Him (Prov. 3:23; 4:12). This imparts the hope to us to continue in faith and trust.


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