You and Jesus are walking along a path together. For a good part of the way the footprints of Jesus are alongside yours, but His are clear, solid, and in a definite direction.You, instead, have left distracted footprints, going zigzag, with pauses, about-turns, changes in direction.
It continues like this for a good part of the journey, but gradually your footprints come closer to those of Jesus and begin to run parallel. You and Jesus are walking side by side like friends. It all seems perfect, but then there is another change. Your footprints, which could be easily distinguished beside those of Jesus in the sand before are now inside His.
Inside His large prints, yours are smaller, but you and Jesus are beginning to move as one person.
You go on for a good while like this, but another change is gradually taking place. Your footprints slowly grow until they coincide with those of Jesus,
Now there are only one set of footprints on the sand. You and Jesus are walking like one person.It seems as if all is going well, but suddenly a second set of footprints re-appears.
That is strange!
The new footprints go zigzag, turn round and round, and make strange diversions.You are surprised, doubtful, anxious. Your dream ends and you begin to pray.
"Lord, I understood the situation in the beginning, with my comings and goings and my pauses. I was unsure as a Christian but I wanted to learn from you. You walked securely and helped me to walk with you."
"And when my little footprints were inside your large ones, I was learning to walk in your footsteps, to follow you really closely."
"Very good! You have learned very quickly."
"When my footprints became identical with yours, it meant that I had become your disciple in everything."
But, Lord, what happened then? Have I gone right back to the beginning? What are these separate footprints, especially the ones that go round in circles?"
There was a moment of silence and then, with a smile, Jesus replied: "Oh those? I am dancing for joy around you."
We are God's joy. This is the most surprising paradox of Christianity. And when it is hard to be faithful, when everything seems dull, when the going is exhausting, stop, close your eyes, mouth and ears.
You will hear God dancing round you.