Whoever fears the LORD walks uprightly,
but those who despise him are devious in their ways.
— Proverbs 14:2
In Proverbs it says: “Whoever fears the LORD walks uprightly.” However, the verse literally translates as “Whoever fears the LORD walks in his righteousness.” In other words, what is a righteous path for one person is not necessarily the right path for another.
A person has to walk righteously in the way that God created him or her to be. In contrast, so many people live their lives, even while dedicated to the Lord and with the best intentions, as God created someone else to be instead of as themselves. God could have made us all the same, but He intentionally chose to make us different, right down to the details of our fingerprints. God gave us each a unique way to serve Him and to thrive. Those who fear the Lord will choose such a path.
The Jewish sages say that there is a righteous path for a person who looks bad to others but looks great to God. Additionally, there is such a thing as a path of life that looks good to other people, but looks very bad in the eyes of God.
We all have different “righteous paths.” What’s right for one person may not be right for us and vice versa. Are we brave enough to be who God created us to be? When we fear the Lord, we aren’t worried about what others will think. Our path doesn’t have to make sense to anyone but ourselves and God.
With prayers for shalom, peace,
Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein
Founder and President