Thursday, May 3, 2018

Taking the Right Path - Martin Wiles

Lead me in the right path, O Lord, or my enemies will conquer me. Make your way plain for me to follow. Psalm 5:8 NLT
Life has many paths, and some are not clearly marked.
Miles from nowhere, my daughter and I plodded along with nothing but a guidebook, supplies, and hiking sticks. Five days in the woods can be frightening.
The more frightening part was walking for miles without seeing a white blaze. According to the guidebook, one should be able to stand beside one blaze and see the next one. Rarely did that occur. One day, we went miles without ever seeing a blaze. Add to this that there were many side trails leading off in various directions, and I sweated over whether we were on the right path.
The only thing that made me relatively sure we were going in the right direction was reading the descriptions in the guidebook. The writer described things a hiker should see along the way. And even though we didn’t see the blazes, we did see the other things.
The psalmist pleaded for God to lead him along the right path. If God didn’t lead him—or if God did but he didn’t listen—the consequences might be severe. He also wanted God to make the path plain—unlike some sections of the path my daughter and I were traveling.
Since life has many paths—represented by the numerous decisions I have to make—knowing the right one is essential. Otherwise, I might find myself in unnecessary debt, broken relationships, jail, or any other number of unpleasant situations.
Taking the right path is possible when I consult the guidebook. God calls it His Word. We call it the Bible. Any direction I need is found there. Life progresses, scientists discover, and technology advances, but the principles of God’s Word never get outdated. They are good for all time.
Prayer keeps me on the right path. Through prayer, I petition God to give me full understanding of His Word, to help me know how to apply it to daily situations, and to guide others in the same path I’m traveling. Prayer helps the guidebook come alive in daily life.
Communing with other believers is also wise. Passing other hikers who were coming from the direction we were going assured us we were traveling in the right direction—even if we had not seen any blazes. There are strength and comfort in numbers.
Don’t guess about whether or not you’re on the right path. You can know.

Prayer: Father, lead us along the right paths in life so we’ll end up where You want us to be. 

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