“Divine G.P.S.” ~Isaiah 30:21
This is a photo that I took from one of the many mountaintop trails in Acadia National Park in Maine. Oftentimes I would hike up the mountain on one trail, look at the directions on the trail signs in the summit’s cairns, and then look at a map and decide which way to descend the mountain. I loved to explore, and wanted to have a change of scenery on my way down, but sometimes that decision would cost me in time, and with extra sore muscles. I can still remember the time I decided to leave Mt. Norumbega’s summit from the western end of this flat topped mountain. I descended the mountain on a trail called the “Goat Trail.” This duly named trail was so steep, that about halfway down I literally had to sit on my rear end and slide down certain sections of sheer granite. It would have been a far better plan on my part to ascend the mountain via the Goat Trail, and then descend on the eastern end of the mountain, coming out much closer to the parking area.
Many times in life I have come to a crossroad that can be just as confusing as the signpost in this photo. The arrows on the sign are pointing in many different directions, each one beckoning to me, and tempting me to travel down unknown paths. Often I joke with my friends and tell them how I wish that the Lord would just write down His directions for me on a sticky note and press it to my forehead. If knowing God’s direction for my life was specifically mapped out for me, then how would I ever be able to grow in the love and the knowledge of Jesus Christ through the searching of the scriptures?
God’s directions for our lives are very clear when it comes to certain commands such as “Do not lie,” or “Love your enemies,” but when it comes to daily direction for my life, the scriptures are not always quite so specific in certain situations. There are no specific instructions on relocating to a different state, accepting a new job, buying a car, or changing the direction in church ministry. This is why it is so critical to know the entire counsel of God’s Word, and live our lives according to His principles.
If I have fully surrendered to the Lord’s personal desires for my life, I will hear His voice prompting me from behind when I am making daily choices. Jesus is the Good Shepherd who is never far from His sheep. When I need to make choices, I can rely on Him to stop me from straying from His paths for my life, and I can trust Him to lead me down His paths of righteousness. He is my guiding light, and will lead me in the right direction one step at a time when my desires are in alignment with His desires. If my decisions line up with what God’s word has already told me, and I am walking closely with the Lord, He will place His desires in my heart and point me in the right direction.
God’s wisdom is available to all of us who ask for it by faith, so it is critical to spend time every day focused in prayer and in fasting. As you present your requests to God, you can write down the sense of direction you hear from the voice behind you. Often, I will make a list of the pros and the cons of a decision I need to make, and it helps me to filter out the choices for my life. It is also wise to seek counsel from mature Christians who can often give me a whole new perspective in the matter. Even though their opinions may conflict with my choices, it is still important to hear what other Christians think about it. Ultimately, we all need God’s clarity, so we should not let someone else make our decisions for us. God will use circumstances and events in our lives to guide us in our decision-making. He is God and He can do anything, including opening and blocking any opportunities that may be the wrong direction for us. If you believe that His Spirit directs your reasoning and your thinking, then any decisions you make will be His will for your life.
Sometimes it’s just a matter of sitting back and waiting for God’s timing, because He is always in control, and nothing we do surprises Him. The Proverbs are an awesome tool for helping us choose the right direction for life, and 16:9 tells us that “a man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.”
This tells me that while my decisions really do matter to God, He is still on His throne, and despite anything that I decide, I cannot mess up His eternal plans for my life, even when I choose the wrong path to take as I hike through this journey on Earth called life.
 Proverbs 16:9. New King James Version (NKJV) Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.