1/20/10

Choice at the Crossroads

I hiked to a waterfall in Keflavik, Iceland, when I lived there during high school. I took a wrong turn at a crossroad, hiked up a hill, and ended up lost until a kind shepherd told me to go back down the road to the crossroads. There was no shortcut, he said, to my destination.

This sounds something like Jeremiah 6:16. Jeremiah told God’s people to go back to the crossroad and look around and then ask for directions back to the old road… the ancient path. This was the tried-and-true road—the good way of God—and if the Israelites returned and “walked” in His truth, they would find rest for their souls. But God’s people said, “Nothing doing. We aren’t going that way.” It was their “no way, Jose” of heart rebellion—a desperately foolish choice. The result? There was no peace in their souls (Jeremiah 6:14) and God was not pleased (Jeremiah 6:20).

Crossroad after crossroad, the Israelites chose their own ways. Whenever they rejected God’s blueprint for rest, they lost many other blessings (Isaiah 30:15). They wanted a calf or Baal instead of the God of their forefathers. After each rebellious choice, God warned His people to repent, but then brought judgment to lovingly draw His people back to Himself.

God's path is always best. Though the road may lead through trials, tribulations, and suffering, it will ultimately lead to peace and rest in the Lord. We’re not wise when we refuse His way and chart out our own agenda. It’s smart to stand back and look carefully for the signposts of the ancient paths in God's Word, still relevant for today. It’s not always easy to recognize the side roads and detours that lead to destruction (Psalm 1:6), so Jeremiah says, “Look carefully." Just as all roads do not lead to God (in spite of what liberal theologians tell us), all lifestyle paths do not please Him. We need to think, consider the choices before us, and follow the eternal road of Truth.

Then, we must “walk" in the ways of God's Truth. We must choose and act according to His Word, will, and ways. It may require repentance for walks down other paths.

The ancient path is the road this generation may not want to follow, but we must challenge our youth to find it. Each of us needs to be sure the worldview we embrace is truly Christian. We need to make genuinely biblical choices, not just in our theology, but in the ways we function in our culture. In the words of Chuck Colson, “Every choice, every action, either expresses a false worldview and thus contributes to a disordered and broken world, or expresses God’s truth and helps build a world that reflects His created order” (The Christian in Today’s Culture, p. 19).

Until the day when Jesus returns in His glorious reign of peace (Isaiah 11:10), following God’s ways in faith and obedience will lead us to seasons of rest in the here and now (Matthew 11:28-29).

3 comments:

Marja said...

Thanks for another great post Dawn. I have read Colson's book on the christian worldview a while back, a real in depth analysis of what's going on in our American culture and what the Christian answer should be. Not exactly an easy read (I needed a dictionary quite often, since English is not my first lanuage) but certainly worth the effort! Thank you Dawn, for being such a clear voice and presenting a clear choice!

Dawn Wilson said...

I had no idea English is not your first language. You're a great writer! And I like your last line (and may use something like it) -- a clear voice for wise choices. You are always an encouragement, Marja!

Marja said...

Yes, that would be a great slogan for your blog Dawn. I really enjoy your writings, and I think you have great wisdom.
I was born and raised in Holland. My husband and I divide our time between Holland and California; summers over there, winters over here :)