Stop Stumbling, Start Striding: Walk in Stride with Jesus

I want to walk in stride with Jesus. In this post I share what causes me to stride and what causes me to stumble. Read on the learn how to walk decisively with Jesus. 

I told Jesus I would walk in stride with Him. But I find myself stumbling into disobedience, responding like a stubborn, know-it-all toddler.

I confess: I have been lax in obeying God with certain details. You really want to know the juicy details, don’t ya? Ha, I thought so. Okay, here goes. *takes deep breath 

See, I have set alarms on my iPhone to jog my memory that bedtime is approaching. When the reminder pops up I feel like a little kid who just lost her fun time because Mama just told her to go to bed. Except it’s not Mama, it’s the Holy Spirit. And lately, I have been ignoring said alarms. By lately, I mean for several weeks now.

What’s the Big Deal?

The “big deal” is: God made it very clear to me that I was to go to bed at a certain time at night. His instructions were so I could catch enough sleep to wake up at the certain time He wants me to wake each morning. Why? It’s wisdom for my body.

When I stay up late and wake late, I’m tired all day, even if I get nine hours of sleep. On the other hand, when I go to bed early and wake early on a regular basis, I feel good and have energy. He’s shown me that I need to keep this schedule to maintain strength for the work of my calling.

When I asked Him for wisdom, He delivered. Disregarding those alarms is foolish. Ignoring the alarms even got to the point where I would feel the Holy Spirit nudging me, but I would continue right on doing what I was doing as if nothing had happened. (Ouch. That was painful to write.)

So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin. James 4:17 ESV

Stride or Stumble

Have you ever linked arms with someone and tried to walk with them while you’re connected like that? When you’re close together in that position, the pace is much smoother when you are in the same stride as the other person. Otherwise, when both persons’ steps are off, one usually is striving to keep up with the other person, or trip in the attempt!

Jesus isn’t my crutch that I use to only walk with Him when I’m wounded. I said I would link arms, and walk with Him for life. My linking arms illustrates my obedience.

My flesh doesn’t always want to yield to Jesus, but it’s always worth it. The result is fruitfulness for His kingdom.

Jesus isn’t my crutch that I use to only walk with Him when I’m wounded. #ThrivingInChrist #WalkingWithGod Click to Tweet

stridesteps together    stumblesteps off

Blessed is everyone who fears the LORD, who walks in his ways! Psalm 128:1 ESV

Use Mile Markers to Walk in Stride with Jesus

One time I printed out a long list of very specific directions to another city. I wasn’t familiar with most of the streets, so I found myself using the mile markers to avoid missing the next turn. To follow God’s directions, I follow by my obedience. If I don’t want to miss His next turn, I need to look at the specifics.

When I find myself going through problems, I need to frequently check the “mile markers.” If the mission He gave me isn’t going so great, I might find that I didn’t carry out a specific direction. Along the way, I need to obey carefully, and that means that I need to make sure that I am honoring every detail.

My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me. Psalm 63:8 NASB

Obedience causes me to link arms with Jesus and walk in stride with Him. Disobedience causes my steps to be off sync. I don’t want to be disobedient. It decreases the anointing, and other has consequences as well.

Obedience causes me to link arms with #Jesus and walk in stride with Him. #ThrivingInChrist Click to Tweet

So how do I obey God? Read my post Obeying God When the Struggle Is Real where I unpack some practical ways.

To stride means to walk with long, decisive steps in a specified direction. I want to walk in stride with Jesus. How are you walking with Him?


Like this post? Pin it! Your friends probably would, too! Use the icons below to share it with them. Your friends will be glad you didn’t keep it all to yourself!

Similar Posts


  1. Martha Danforth says:

    This was a good reminder for me right now! Thank you, Kelly!

    1. You’re welcome, Martha! I’m thrilled to see you here, and so glad that it was helpful! 🙂

  2. Hi Kelly! I enjoyed reading this because God’s also been leading me to an earlier bedtime after the crazy schedule summer I had. (And have every year! And yes, it’s hard to obey that call!

    1. Hi Betsy! Yeah, this one seems to be hard, but I’m looking at other areas of life, too. Btw, congrats on winning the devotional challenge on Compel! 🙂

  3. Ifeoma Samuel says:

    Yes , I totally agree. Disobedience leaves our definitely defenseless!
    Thank you for sharing your devotional

    1. Hi, Ifeoma! Glad to see you here. 🙂 When I read defenseless I thought about how it can open the door to the enemy, giving him free access. And we don’t want that! Thanks for visiting!

  4. Ifeoma Samuel says:

    I meant disobedience leaves us defenseless

    1. I thought so! I read a report once that on social media our eyes don’t see the mistakes and we just keep on reading because of all the shortcuts for texting and stuff 😉

  5. Great illustration, Kelly! That will stick with me- because I so awkwardly have walked with arms linked while out of sync (literally and in the sense you describe!) It often is those smaller things like going to bed on time that throw us- amen!

    1. Hi, friend! Yes, it’s been the details with me lately. Ugh! But God is gracious even in my failures. I heard a women speak once and she said at the end of the day look in the mirror and say, I didn’t do everything right today, but I choose to wake up tomorrow and obey God in a new day. That’s not verbatim, but it stuck with me to keep moving forward!

  6. Kelly- I want to walk in matching strides with God, because walking the other way makes me frustrated and just tires me out. I know this, but many times I’m too into myself. I want what I want even though it makes everything more difficult and tiring.
    Trying to be better every day;)

    1. You described the struggle that we face on a daily basis, Julie, but I’m so glad your heart is after God and you desire to walk linked with Him! 🙂

  7. Yes, obedience is the measure of our commitment! I can talk all day about following God, but unless I am faithful to Him in the hidden things, it’s all just talk.

    1. So glad to see you here, Michele! Your comment reminded me of the verse that says God looks at the heart. He points out those hidden things that I don’t notice. Faithful in the hidden things…hmm I’m going to keep that phrase close. Thanks, friend!

  8. Great post, Kelly! I’m so glad I stopped by to read your post on this subject. I hope you’ll consider linking up at Mondays @ Soul Survival. Blessings!

    1. I’m glad you stopped by, too, Donna! I will check it out. I’ve seen the phrase here and there. Thanks for leaving a comment today, and I pray that you are staying nourished and thriving everyday! 🙂

  9. Loved this Kelly! Psalm 63:8 is one of my absolute favorites! I remember the King James Version for some reason- “My soul follows hard after thee.” I even used this for my website design. Lol Just as David found out, obedience is so impactful towards our relationship with the Lord.

    1. Hi, Gretchen! Thanks so much for visiting! KJV is my favorite translation for that verse, and a favorite verse, too. I’m glad to have met you today, and look forward to connecting with you more! 🙂

  10. Horace Williams Jr. says:

    I love this post Kelly It is poignant and powerful. I can relate to the term you used “mile markers” regarding following God’s direction with an obedient heart. It is amazing the progress in my day when I have early morning time with God. It usually leads directly to me writing a section/verse for the book or a jotting down a thought for a post. I thank God for His grace as we struggle to keep in stride with Him. I am always blessed by the thoughts you share and how you deliver them. Definitely a post I will be sharing on my inspiration page. I hope you have a wonderful weekend and may God continue to bless you and yours as you stay in stride with Him!

    1. I’m blessed to see you here, Horace! Thank you so much for your kind compliments; they are so encouraging. I love to hear of those who have time with the Lord in the early morning. It’s my favorite! That’s when I draw my strength and link up for the day. And it sounds like you do, too. Please let me know where your inspiration page is so I can follow it. Many blessings to you as you choose to walk in obedience to our Lord. 🙂

  11. Yes! It is totally exhausting to be out of step. Great article! Blessings!

  12. “To follow God’s directions, I follow by my obedience.” This strikes me right between the eyes, Kelly. I so need the markers and the distinct reflection of every step so that I know…I KNOW…that I am walking with the One Whom I need to obey. Thank you and I will be back!

    1. Yes, to KNOW! I’m so glad it was helpful! You made my day! 🙂

  13. Lori @ Frog's Lilypad says:

    I love this, Kelly! I want to be in obedience to Jesus. He’s not a crutch and I don’t want to treat Him as one. I’m going to link arms with Jesus so I can be a little closer to Him. Thank you for sharing this encouragement with Thankful Thursdays.

    1. I’m happy to hear that you are linking arms with Jesus and walking in obedience, Lori! Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment. I’m glad I found your linkup; thanks for hosting. 😉

  14. Oh my! This is what I’ve been feeling led to do also – go to bed early so that I can get up early and write. I, too, have been having a tough time doing that.

    “I don’t want to be disobedient. It destroys the anointing, and other has consequences as well.” This is definitely food for thought! Thanks!

    1. Thanks for sharing here how He is speaking to you, Jerralea! I’ll be praying for you as I get up to write, too!

  15. Groooaaaannnnn. This is definitely me. I am so bad at wasting my day sometimes, I just get started on what I really needed done that I start things almost at bedtime, and then, I sit and type on computer, work on scrapbook project for daughter, sew, etc. Then I am looking at 10:30 or 11:30 to even get ready for bed….NOOOO! But, I have set a time to wave, blow kisses and give air hugs to my grandson every morning on his way to school to encourage him in being excited about learning. God has suggested nicely that I watch my time and quit at a certain time, no matter what is done, or not done. Gotta use the phone alarm… that’s a gotta. Thanks for the word.

    1. Oh, friend! So glad to see you here! I love how you said he suggested nicely. lol He’s got so much in store for you! It’s not just bedtime for me, but I’ve noticed other things lately. He’s been showing me that If I can be trusted to be faithful in the little things, He will allow me to be faithful in much. Remember that verse? That’s for you, too. 🙂

  16. “My linking arms demonstrates my obedience.” Yes! Our obedience opens up so much healing and guidance from the Lord. This is so well written Kelly!

    1. Yes, it does, Crystal! Thanks for the compliment. 🙂

  17. dawnklinge says:

    I loved the way you described walking in obedience with Jesus, as linking arms, rather than using Jesus as a crutch, only when we’re wounded. That’s an image that will stay with me. Thank you for linking with Grace and Truth last week. I would love to feature this post tomorrow.

    1. What a pleasant surprise to my morning! Thanks so much for the feature and for your comment, Dawn! 🙂

  18. sherrylynnstahl says:

    Ok, God has been speaking to me about getting serious with sleep too! Sadly I’ve ignored Holy Spirit’s nudges at times as well. This post is a great reminder that getting in stride takes us walking in His stride, not my own. Time to change my nighthawk ways! Saw the post on Susan B. Mead’s Linkup. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Great to see you here, friend! Maybe God just wants us physically up to being more productive for His kingdom.

  19. Love th visual of linking arms with Jesus, Kelly! It’s so true, when we focus on staying in step with Him, we won’t stumble!

  20. Lori Schumaker of Seaching for Moments says:

    Oh, goodness,Kelly! You could have been describing me here with the obedience and sleeping thing! (As I sit past midnight doing some catch-up work!) Yikes! Thank you for this needed reminder and thank you for sharing this hope at #MomentsofHope!
    Blessings and smiles,

  21. It’s past my bedtime right now. I was reading your article as fast as I could…saying to myself. Should’ve gone to bed 15 minutes ago. LOL Great article.

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      That’s too funny! Thanks for reading! 🙂

Comments are closed.