Confession: I've been on the wrong road doing 'good things' recently. Maybe you, too, have been experiencing a lack of peace (great or small distress in your spirit) even as you are busy doing many good things. I have been sinning against the LORD alone (Psalm 51:4) simply because my choice path has not been HIS. You know what they say, "If the devil can't make ya bad, he'll make ya busy!" Touche!
Prayer: When I went to HIM asking for HIS perfect counsel in regards to my stunted peace, HE opened my eyes and I saw 'Three Paths'. As I looked down those paths, they each were appealing for different reasons.
The first path was 'the world's way' - and the prince of this world had custom fit it to look very appealing to me in this season of my life as a follower of Christ (our Adversary is no dummy). But as I looked a bit further to where it led, I could see it was a very short, dead-end path...can you see the sign?
The second path was 'my way' - it looked harmless enough. But as I looked further down that path (which was a little lengthier than the first one), wouldn't you guess, I could see it led to nowhere as well! I must add that there was a multitude of seemingly good things along this path also (was I seeing what I wanted to see?). But nonetheless, it too, led to nowhere just like the first path.
The last Path (as usual, it would be the last one I would examine) turned out to be The Best Path - 'HIS Way'. That was the path my Heavenly Father had already paved for me. There was no end in sight! I realized very quickly that the other two paths simply were not good enough. No matter how appealing they seemed (key word), they would not yield what my heart ultimately longed for - productivity, purpose and fruitfulness!
Who wants to waste all their time working toward an effort that yields NOTHING? Which leads me to...
Repentance: After I could see, I knew I had to turn back - and I did!
It should be obvious to the maturing follower that there is only One BEST road. But, with three seemingly good options before us, we have to diligently inquire of HIM in order that we may discern that which is BEST. Oswald Chambers has said that 'good is always the enemy of the Best'.
The Hebrew word for sin 'chatta'ah' (meaning habitual sinfulness and its penalty) comes from the root word 'chata' which means to MISS THE MARK. You see? There can be ONLY ONE MARK and HE designed it; ONE PATH and HE paved it! Did you know that the very first time that sin is mentioned in The Scriptures is in the account of Cain's and Abel's offerings in Genesis 4:7? Of course, this has me asking myself which kind of offering have I been laying before the feet of my LORD.
So what, the other paths appear so pleasant to my eyes?! Ultimately, both still miss the mark for the life He's already designed for me.
"There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death." ~ Proverbs 16:25
And with this daily dose of a Spirit-filled injection (the shot only stings for a little while, but the benefits are out of this world, REALLY!), this Recovering Pharisee has been praying for you that your ways be productive (by HIS Spirit) and not futile and fruitless in your flesh.
Spiritual C.P.R. always results in a revival of our spirits! Baruch ADONAI (BLESSED be the LORD!)
ADONAI! I thank You for RENEWING a steadfast spirit within me today! May You continue to do so as I walk closely by Your side. In Jesus' Life-Giving Name, I pray, Amen.