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Which Way, O Lord?
"This is what the Lord says; 'Stand at the crossroads and look... ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.'" Jeremiah 6:16 (NIV)
The way many people attempt to determine the will of God would make a great new television series entitled, "That's Unbelievable!"
A woman with a lifetime dream of going to the Holy Land was trying to determine the will of God on this matter. Before going to bed one night, she read the tour pamphlet and noticed in the plans that they would be traveling on a 747 jet. She tossed back and forth that night and laid awake for hours wondering what God would have her do. Rolling over in the morning, she noticed that her beside clock read 7:47. Her answer! She became convinced that this was God's answer to her and it was His will for her to make that trip. "That's Unbelievable!"
You cannot readily determine the will of God for your life outside of having your heart opened through prayer, the study of God's Word and obedience to it. And, if you are outside the will of God, you will find yourself without peace in your life.
When the prophet Jeremiah spoke the words quoted above, Jerusalem was being threatened with total destruction. Like today, the warning signs were all around the people. God in His great love was sounding the danger alarm so that they would turn from their wicked ways and be saved. But in Jeremiah 6: 10, we read that "The word of the Lord [was] offensive to them; they [found] no pleasure in it." So, the siege works were being built outside their walls and utter ruin lay ahead.
Has the Word of the Lord been offensive to you? Do you find no pleasure in it? Are you suffering from the devastating effects of your own bad choices, divorce or sexual sin? Are your hopes and dreams dead? Perhaps you are bound up by addiction to drugs, alcohol, gambling or pornography and can't break away. Are financial pressures, wayward children or broken relationships weighing heavily on your soul? Is your life under siege? Are you standing at the crossroads today? The Lord is saying to you "Look... ask where the good way is and walk in it and you will find rest for your soul."
Where is the "good way" to be found? The prophet Isaiah tells us to "Seek ye out the book of the Lord." The apostle Paul teaches that "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness."
If there is not a joy in your heart when you read the Word of God or there is no draw to read the Bible at all, then you have not found the Christ of the Bible or you're simply not walking in obedience to God's Son. For He is the Word made flesh. (John 1: 14) You are not truly asking "Which way, O Lord?" You are telling Him how you are going to live and demanding that He bless it. That is the sin which keeps you from living the abundant life promised in Christ.
If you are seeking peace in your life and rest for your soul today, you are standing at the CrossRoads...and all signs are pointing to Jesus!
AN IMAGE OF THEMSELVES
Have you heard of the controversial exhibit at the Detroit Institute of Art? It is the Rembrandt and the Face of Christ exhibit. Rembrandt’s depictions of Jesus were even more controversial in the 17th century. His familiarity with the Jewish community in his native Netherlands moved him to paint Jesus with a Jewish appearance. People were shocked! Jesus looking Jewish? They saw Jesus in the art of the time portrayed as Caucasian.
It’s amazing how in every age, people misunderstood Christ. Instead of struggling to be transformed into the image of Christ, they worked to transform Christ into an image of themselves.
I wonder what God would say to us today as He sees all of our so-called Christian organizations in constant activity but with little action or movement. The huge building program proclaiming astronomical figures in cost and “people reached” is indeed impressive. The mushroom growth of both churches and organizations would seem to indicate a healthy condition. The polls which give such a large percentage of evangelicals would appear to be a sign that we are marching to Zion. But before we sing “Onward Christian Soldiers,” let’s find out how many are marching. We are not even standing on the promises; we are sitting on the premises! We are not stalwart soldiers of the faith. We are paper dolls playing church in our bigger and better sanctuaries. We are seeking entertainment, not instruction or inspiration in our smug complacency. We do not have a vision or concern for a lost world out there that has not even heard the Word of God. (Dr. J. Vernon McGee).
One day John Wesley was walking with a troubled man who expressed his doubt as to the goodness of God. He said, "I do not know what I shall do with all this worry and trouble." At the same moment Wesley saw a cow looking over a stone wall. "Do you know," asked Wesley, "why that cow is looking over the wall?" "No," said the man. Wesley said, "The cow is looking over the wall because she cannot see through it. That is what you must do with...