Good Feet

Stephen Shaffer

READ : Habakkuk 3:17-19

. . . he makes my feet like the deer’s. (v. 19)

Deer in Israel, known as ibex, have specially designed feet. These small deer have feet created for life in the mountains. They cling to the rocks, enabling them to climb what looks, to us, like a sheer cliff. Where we might slip and fall, the ibex walks confidently. The rough, rocky terrain is their home. They walk sure-footedly through the difficult paths of the mountains.

Habakkuk proclaims that God makes his feet like the deer’s. He does not ask for God to make his path easier. He asks for God to make his feet able to handle the path. Habakkuk trusts God to lay the path, whether rough or smooth. Having the feet of a deer will not mean that there are no obstacles ahead in life, but that these challenges will be met. Instead of asking for a straightening of his path, the prophet asks for a strengthening of his feet. Even though the road is hard, Habakkuk trusts that God will not let him fall. No matter where his path takes him, he will not slip. He prays that as he walks the path God has laid for him, he will walk sure-footed. He asks God not to change the road, but to change him.

God leads us on different paths, sometimes rough and sometimes smooth. Whatever the path he sets before us, we can join our prayers with the prophet Habakkuk. We can pray that God would give us the strength—the feet—for the path ahead.


Lord, make my feet like the deer’s. Amen.