Proverbs 14:12, 3:7, 26:12 | James 4:10 | Matthew 5:3
It’s always the same choice, isn’t it?
We always have to choose between our way and God’s way. We hope they will be the same, but they often differ.
What’s the big deal with doing things our own way?
There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death.Proverbs 14:12 NLT
The big deal is that following our own path only leads us to death. Think about that the next time someone advises you to “follow your heart” or to “find your own way” or some other such nonsense. Following your own path will lead to your destruction.
A proverb advises not to get caught up with how wise you are. Choose God’s way instead!
Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the Lord and turn away from evil.Proverbs 3:7 NLT
If you think about that proverb, it basically describes two opposites: 1) being impressed with your own wisdom, and 2) fearing the Lord and turning away from evil. So you could pretty safely infer from it that thinking you are wise is going to turn you away from God and toward evil!
Before you start thinking that’s stretching the meaning too far…here is another proverb to back it up.
There is more hope for fools than for people who think they are wise.Proverbs 26:12 NLT
Do you want to do things God’s way? It may not be as hard as you think.
People often get caught up in a cycle of trying to follow God, then finding out how weak their willpower is. They say, “I’m not going to sin anymore…Hallelujah!” Then they try and try, only to fail. But following God’s way is not about trying and trying, it’s about giving up and admitting that you don’t have what it takes to live a sinless life.
Where does that leave you? Hopefully on your knees before God.
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.James 4:10 NLT
James writes that if we come to God in a lowly state, he will lift us up. Jesus said the same thing…
“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.”Matthew 5:3 NLT
So we’ll boil this down to good news and bad news. The bad news is: you need to choose God’s way over your own. The good news? You can’t do it by yourself. Admit that to God, and he will help you…and welcome you into his kingdom. Hallelujah!
Questions for Group Discussion
- What does it mean to “choose God’s way over your own way”? Is there a less ‘churchy’ way to say this?
- Have you ever been disappointed with how difficult it is to choose God’s way? Have you tried and tried, only to fail? Does that make you feel guilty?
- Can you consistently choose God’s way without the help of the Holy Spirit? Show some scripture to back up your answer.
Application: My Way AND The Highway
“It’s my way or the highway!” (That means if you don’t do something their way, you had better get going.) Why do you have to choose? Couldn’t it be “my way AND the highway”? Wouldn’t that be way easier?
Before this gets too confusing with the highway metaphor and what not…we’re talking about a situation in which choosing to do things the right way could put you on the fast track.
The only thing is: when you choose to go God’s way, you won’t know exactly where he’s taking you. You will only know that it will be very good. Better, in fact, than anything you could have cooked up for yourself.
- Lay out your schedule for the month. (If this is too much, start with just a week.)
- Include things you have to do and things you want to do, both.
- Include “soft plans” as well as solid plans.
- Pray over your schedule, touching each item on your schedule one-by-one as you ask God for his guidance.
- As you do this once each day of the month, look for promptings from the Holy Spirit.
- As God speaks to you, make notes about what you hear.
If you end up changing your schedule because of God’s promptings, be sure to make some notes about why you did.