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By Esih Efuru

I had a habit of walking with my head down to the ground as a young girl. I just didn’t see anything worth looking up at during those tumultuous years. As I grew older, I shifted my focus to my hands, still not interested in people’s faces or goings on. There just didn’t seem to be anything worth paying attention to. The only thing that could grab my attention was music or a good book title. I walked for years in the bubble of oblivion, and life passed me by with its vibrant sirens. I walked to the comfortable beat of fate’s monotony and expected nothing more than the usual.

At the pinnacle of one of my life’s most disturbing moments, I remembered a poem about “footprints” and the joy in knowing that I don’t have to walk alone. The poem lifted my soul, and reminded me that with God on my side, not only do I have to walk alone, but when I do walk into situations, they are all set up for me to get my stride. God chooses our life episodes to give us our footing, and to ensure that we are headed in the direction of destiny.

There is a confidence that brews once you realize that you are held lovingly and kept carefully by the Creator. Security, the mother of safety, envelops your being and you trust that God will never leave you or let you fall. Your head lifts and your body becomes light, while your feet become grounded in peace. Consequently, your posture and speech shifts, and you develop your faith stride. You walk among other searching souls as if you own the universe. After all, God promised it to you at the moment you were born. The Creator will always adorn, affirm, protect and endow his creations with favor. That’s just how loving God is.

A young homeboy walking past me at the bus station a week ago told me that he loved my swag and how I walked with it. I chuckled in acknowledgment and rejoiced in the love and confidence that God had restored. I felt more secure, loved, light and grounded than I’d ever felt in my life. God’s love was the source; God’s favor upon my life was evident. I walked like I finally knew that I was somebody.

Keep In Stride  was originally published on

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