This is what the Lord says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.”
But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.’
Every now and again my husband Jay gets a phone call that someone is stuck on a dirt road (which becomes mud when it rains) north of our farm and that he and his tractor are needed to pull them out of the mire. Often times it is young men with four wheel drive pickups, need I say more. Sometimes he leaves them to their own devices as their problems were of their own making. But one particular evening it was a young family headed to a charity event in a nearby town. Being unfamiliar with the area they had relied on their GPS to guide them, which had in fact misguided them. Instead of taking the paved fork road it sent them the shortest route, which was down a mud road in the dark of night. You see, the best route to their final destination hadn’t changed, but how they found their way had. Now had the couple relied on an old fashioned paper map they would have arrived safe and sound as this little dirt (mud) road would not have even been on the map. Just the other day a client of mine was telling me that as she was trying to drive to Florida; her GPS kept trying to take her to Michigan. Luckily she had printed out directions, because when she had stopped at a filling station in the midst of a large metropolitan area to pick up a road map, they didn’t have them for sale! In fact, the young clerk looked at her like she had two heads!
It’s the same story with God. Whenever I try to buy into the idea that God’s plan for human beings is old fashioned and out dated and not relevant to my modern day life, I get lost and stuck in the mud. I have been just like those rowdy, rebellious young men who made a conscious choice to, against better judgment, take that questionable road and ended up in the mire and mud. Sometimes God has left me to my own devices since my troubles were of my own making. But more often than not, I am like the young family, who, in unfamiliar territory chose to rely on the modern culture, which, in fact will misguide me and take me the shortest, but not the best, route in the dark of night, leaving me stuck in the mire. Which I could have avoided had I depended on the old fashioned, tried and true road map of the ages, God’s Word and Jesus Christ. You see the best route to our final destination hasn’t changed, but how we find our way has. Most of us no longer read the Bible or rely on God’s unchanging principles to point us in the right direction and it shows.
But misery loves company and we are in good company. Sadly, the first man and woman and every human being right on down the line to us (I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but this includes you, yes you, and don’t look at me as though I have two heads) has fallen for that old song and dance that we know better than God, like our text says, “But we said, “We will not walk in it.”. We moderns tend to roll with something like, “How can such and old book be relevant to my life in the twenty first century? Well, here it is, if we were to read it, we would find that although we may have modern advances, we are still getting stuck in the mire in the same ways folks did six thousand years ago. We are still killing, stealing, lying, coveting and dishonoring one another. If we would but read the Bible, we would find we are just like the folks in it and that we, like they, need God to guide us.
I think this New Year I will stick to the ancient paths.
Where the good way is, and walk in it.
And find rest for my soul.
Won’t you join me?
Be joy filled always,