Walking with the Lord
Paul is writing to the church in Rome as he is traveling on his way to Jerusalem, spreading the Gospel. At this time, Paul had been preaching for almost 20 years, yet had never been to Rome as this was not one of the churches he founded. Therefore, unlike his letters to other churches where Paul had to confront challenges and emphasize unity, this letter is being addressed to the Roman Christians solely focused on God and His redemptive plan and how God was being represented there through His people. In other words, Paul is writing to let them know that their reputation is known throughout the land and that he hopes to visit one day. Their walk with the Lord was so influential, that he wanted to be there and witness it firsthand.
Another important aspect to point out in this passage is that Paul identifies himself as a servant of Jesus Christ. He doesn’t list his resume or talk about all the revivals he has held or how many people have been saved under his ministry. He doesn’t boast about how many churches he has founded or how many followers he has gained. Instead, he simply recognizes that his most valuable attribute is being a child of God, despite the fact that he was imprisoned for preaching the Gospel.
In walking with the Lord, we do not get to choose our course. If so, we would only want to walk an easy path – a flat surface without any stress or strain. However, if you want to build up your muscle and stamina, if you want to get the most fit, you have to experience some terrain (hills (highs), valleys (lows), etc.) In fact, treadmills have a setting that you can select that has a picture on it, usually a mountain or stairs that represent you are no longer on a relaxed route. In many instances, when we endure a crisis or difficult situation, how we respond is based on what we have conditioned ourselves to handle.
If you have been wondering where you went wrong, perhaps you made a wrong turn while you were walking with the Lord. Maybe you got lost. If so, what better time than now to repent and dedicate your life back to the Lord. It is never too late to start over.