Last week my wife Terese and I were in Jacksonville Florida for the Converge Transform Conference (Here’s a shout out to all the friends we met there!). The last morning the conference had a later start, so Terese and I decided to head out of the hotel and drive to a restaurant for early breakfast.
Our rental car didn’t have a navigation device, so we used an app on Terese’s phone for directions. At times, the navigational voice on the phone gave us advance notice about upcoming turns, and at other times it only gave us a quick command or reminder to turn or continue on the route. During our commute, I encountered some unusual road configurations due to construction and was tempted to disregard the verbal instructions coming out of the phone and follow my own driving inclinations instead. When we arrived at the restaurant (which had fantastic homemade biscuits and gravy) I realized the app was worthy of my trust as a driver.
Living a life that worships God in all things includes listening to and following His promptings and instructions for life: This can only happen when we are connected to God in an authentic, dynamic relationship in the person of Jesus Christ.
God has provided practical ways for us to hear His voice in our life. For the most part, God’s directions are long-term, eternal ones that lead us to everlasting life in Him. However, He is also willing to give us specific wisdom in our circumstances and life when we ask. More powerful than any app, God intimately knows us and is able to bring us safely from wherever we are to our eternal home with Him.
The big question is whether we will listen and follow God’ life-navigational instructions.
The Bible has a lot to say about this:
“So be careful to do what the Lord your God has commanded you; do not turn aside to the right or to the left.”
Deuteronomy 5:32 NIV
“Be very strong; be careful to obey all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, without turning aside to the right or to the left.
“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”
The life-navigation tools God has provided include:
• The Bible, which is the living Word of God;
• The Holy Spirit, whom Jesus called the Counselor—the One whose presence and power prompts, teaches, and empowers us to follow God;
• Other Christ-followers, whom the Bible calls the Body of Christ, the Church;
At times in my life, I have been tempted to trust my own human inclinations over God’s navigational tools. I’ve learned that following those inclinations only results in frustration, ugly detours, and wrong destinations. The Good News is that God can always bring us from wherever we are to the right road that leads to Him. We simply have to trust God and make use of the tools He has given us for safely making it home to Him.
God sometimes confirms the wisdom He gives us in the Bible, the Holy Spirit, and the Church through our life circumstances. However, circumstances aren’t always an accurate barometer of whether or not we’re hearing from and following God. I will write more about this next time.
Worship at its heart involves a life that is totally given over to God. When this is the reality of our life, we will entrust our life and future to the God, the Navigator of navigators, and will obediently follow His directions for our life.
Blessings to you, my friends!