Friday, August 22, 2014

Fork in the Road

Encouragement for your daily walk with God 

Yogi Berra is famous for the statement, “When you come to the fork in the road, take it.” It makes no sense unless you know the context. Yogi lived on a road that split right and left, but eventually merged back together a short distance away. Therefore, it didn’t really matter whether you went left or right at the fork in the road because, eventually, you’d get to his house.

Metaphorically speaking, we come to many forks in the road of life. And just as with Yogi, it doesn’t really matter which road you take. Do I wear these shoes or those shoes? Do I eat Mexican or Italian for dinner? Do I buy the red one or the blue one? The majority of our choices don’t really have long term consequences, much less eternal consequences. However, there are some choices that will affect the course of our life and have long term consequences.

The people of Israel came to that fork in the road, and the direction they chose involved dramatic consequences. They had been visited by the LORD. They knew He was the true and living God. They had been delivered from Egyptian bondage as a result of His strong hand on their behalf. Now came the choice: Do they continue to follow God, or do they pursue other gods? Do they choose God’s way or their way? Do they choose life and its blessing, or death and its curses? 

Joshua spoke to Israel at one of those critical fork-in-the-road times. They were at the point of crossing the Jordan River into the Promised Land, the Land “flowing with milk and honey.” He told them to “throw away the gods that are among you. People from other lands serve those gods. But you, incline your heart unto the Lord God of Israel.” [24:23]

Christ followers find themselves at that fork in the road many times in life. We know that we have been delivered from sin’s bondage by the powerful hand of God. We have come to faith in Christ, brought to God by the Holy Spirit of promise. But do we choose to continue in His way or choose our own way? Do we live for Him or live for ourselves? Do we incline our hearts toward God or follow the idols of the heart? In all of these, our choice has long term consequences. 

Thankfully, the LORD is present with us and willing to help when our “spirit is willing but the flesh is weak!” Can I get an AMEN? Furthermore, we have His sure Word, the Bible, from which also we draw strength; “Your Word have I hidden in my heart that I might not sin against You!” [Psalm 119:11]

When you come to those fork-in-the-road times, choose Christ! Choose God’s way! His is the way to life eternal.

See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. For I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the LORD your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess. But if your heart turns away and you are not obedient, and if you are drawn away to bow down to other gods and worship them, I declare to you this day that you will certainly be destroyed. You will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess. This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Deuteronomy 30:15-20