“There is a path before each person that seems right,
but it ends in death.”
The bible tells us that in the beginning, God created everything. He created man and woman. He had a plan for how He wanted it to all work out, so He put His plan into action. Society now, and many times in the past, has got this backwards. Many of us go around acting as though man created God. However, God is always watching what we say and think, and He knows when we are living according to His plan versus our plan.
Why is this important?
The bible also warns us of a Day of Judgment where Jesus will come back and we will all stand trial before God. We will be given the reward we deserve; for some, eternal life in the Kingdom with Jesus, and for others, eternal life of torment in Hell.
Sadly, too many people don’t take this seriously. I didn’t for many years. I knew about it, but my focus was elsewhere. Why the change in my life?
God wants for none of us to perish in eternal torment. He wants us to turn to Him and choose His way. But sometimes we don’t. So, God, our loving Father, corrects us. He allows us to make our choices and to live in the consequences from those choices. In some instances, when we are walking in sin, we open a doorway to Satan and God allows him to come in and torment us right here on earth.
Can you think of a time where God was trying to correct you for something? Can you think of a time where you were walking in your own ways and living only to please yourself? It is usually this time where God will step in and allow some discipline in our lives to get us onto the right path. Sometimes, this doesn’t take much and sometimes, we can be stubborn, and we can go all the way to rock-bottom before we turn to God.
For me, I was stubborn and finally decided to turn to God and take Him seriously after dragging along rock-bottom for a while.
God will keep working on us
“No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.”
God knows our potential. He knows what we are capable of if we are willing to fully surrender to Him. He won’t force us. He will, however, allow discipline and consequence in our life. Even then, we are sometimes still not willing to change. For these people, they miss the potential in their lives that God see’s and had planned for them.
We might go about our days winning in life. We can be good at our jobs, we can be good at our relationships, and we can be good with our finances. However, we can miss the mark with God. If we go through our life doing what seems good to us, without seeking God’s direction and Will for our life, we will likely get to the end and find out we were on the wrong path all along.
We can ignore the calls and knocks from the Lord; we can ignore the discipline of the Lord that comes in the form of hardships and trials and loss in our life; but we won’t be able to ignore Judgment Day and the trial that we will face.
So, God will keep working on us. But why are we so stubborn at times? Why do we believe that our plans and intentions are so much better than what God wants for us?
If we spent more time each day reading the bible and learning about God’s promises to those who follow, and His Plans for each of us, we would be more likely to follow Him even more and seek His ways instead of ours.
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God doesn’t want us to have nothing
For me, I always felt like to follow God meant I’d have to give up everything and live a boring life of nothingness. I believed that because I had to give up all that was sinful in my life, that there’d be nothing left to enjoy or do.
But this is a lie of the enemy who doesn’t want for anyone to have a relationship with God. Satan will tell us all sorts of things to prevent us from turning away from him and to God.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
As I started walking with God more and letting go of my old sinful ways, I noticed that I didn’t give up everything into nothingness, but instead, that I gained. Instead of day after day of feeling like there is absolutely no point to my life, I started to realize purpose. Instead of feeling bad for always messing up and doing wrong, I started to walk with a clear conscience before God and the people in my life. And, now, previous bad consequences from many poor choices are turning to good consequences from repeated good choices.
And, this is what God wants for us. He wants to prosper us and give us hope and purpose. To prosper doesn’t necessarily mean financially, as most relate it to. So, when God see’s that we are faithful to Him and trying to walk in His ways, He takes care of us. He prospers us in our jobs, in our relationships, in our communities, in our thinking, and maybe even sometimes in our finances. But most of all, the true prosperity will come in the form of Eternal Life in His rich Kingdom.
If we are willing to deny ourselves certain pleasures for now, He will present us with great gifts later at the end of the race.
Seek God daily and surrender yourself to Him
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.”
We don’t get to know what lies ahead in our life. We try to make the best choices we can sometimes, but often, we end up on a dead-end road. But God knows what lies ahead and He is willing to show us the right way to go if we are willing to stop and ask for directions.
How do we do this? By surrendering to Him each and every day.
When we wake up in the morning, we can spend some time in gratitude, being thankful to God for all that we do have and all that is going well. We can kneel in prayer and start our day off talking to Him. We can go before Him in prayer and ask forgiveness for our sins and wrongdoings.
As we pray about our sins and are forgiven, we can have a clear conscience. We can get right with God before we go to bed, which generally results in better sleep, and we can start right with Him in the morning before we leave for school or work.
When we do pray, we can ask for direction in our lives for whatever it is we do throughout the day. When we have big issues and decisions on our minds, we can seek His direction and find out what He wants us to do. By bringing virtually everything before God, and not running head-on into the unknown, we can start to experience His way of living which results in a more full and abundant life.
Be patient when seeking God’s direction
When we do go to God and ask Him to show us His way, we must be patient. God won’t generally jump up and make it all come together in that hour. Depending on the situation, it could be that day, but God wants us to grow in faith and trust in Him. He takes His time and works the situation out in the right way and in the right time, but He asks us to be patient.
This is hard because it’s not “our” time. Of course, we want answers now and we want to be delivered from hardships now. We say we are already patient and can endure, but for this, “God, we just need it done right now.” God knows exactly how patient we are and exactly what we can endure. But He also knows how to raise our levels of patience and faith. So, He does.
If you find that you are going through something difficult and want God’s direction, ask Him. But be willing to hold still and wait until He returns with the answer. Do what you know to do, seek Godly counsel in big decisions, and when the answer still isn’t there, trust Him to make it known to you. He will in due time if you wait patiently expecting Him to come through.
But we can read His promises and trust that He will come through.
“I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours.”
“But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!”
God answers the prayers of those who believe in Him, who trust Him and wait upon Him, and who follow Him in His Way.
We can get ahead of God sometimes as we go about our days. We can even leave Him far behind as we venture forth to fulfill our best laid plans. But when we fail to walk in stride with God, we are walking alone and become vulnerable to the pains of this world and the attacks of the enemy.
If we are willing to surrender ourselves to God each day, He will help us and show us the right way. He will prevent us from stumbling and experiencing the hardships of those who follow the enemy and live to please this world. He will prosper us in His way, and He will bring us to a destination we can’t get to any other way. All we need to do is ask Him, believe Him, trust Him, and wait patiently on Him. He is a faithful God.
If you don’t have a relationship with Jesus, you can follow this link (Prayer for Salvation) to find out how.