For most of my life I prayed that God would give me an easy path to walk on. I prayed for a life that was safe, secure, and free from pain. My perspective on prayer changed greatly when I encountered the Ibex of the En-Gedi desert when I lived in Israel. It was there in the desert that I learned from the Ibex to pray that I would have feet for the path I was on.
The Ibex can best be described as a combination of deer and mountain goat. In the Hebrew Bible (Christian Old Testament) whenever the English translation says, “deer,” the writer is talking about an Ibex, as they are the only type of deer native to the deserts of Israel. The Ibex live high up in the mountains, and deal with extremely difficult terrain on a daily basis.
The Ibex have a very difficult path in life, but it appears that God has given them feet for the path they have been set on. Notice Habakkuk 3:19, “The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer (Ibex), he enables me to tread on the heights.” Also notice 2 Samuel 22:34, “He makes my feet like the feet of a deer (Ibex), he causes me to stand on the heights.” A similar reference can also be found in Psalm 18:33.
Sometimes in life we find ourselves walking extremely difficult paths. The paths may not get easier or less painful, but we can hope and pray that God will provide us with feet for the path we have been set on like the Ibex of En-Gedi.