What To Do When You Don't Know What To Do
Evangelist E. Stanley Jones once told the story of a traveler who asked for directions to a certain destination. He got his response from the local man he asked: "If you go on the way you are headed, it will be about 25,000 miles. But if you turn around, it will be about three."
That story reminded me of pastor Andy Stanley's "Principle of the Path," which essentially states, "It's your direction, not your intention that determines your destination." Regardless of your good intentions, if you are headed in the wrong direction you won't get to where you want to go.
The difficult bit sometimes is figuring out which is the right path. There are times when it is clearer than others, to be sure. When choosing between self-destructive behavior or life-giving habits--the right way is not that hard to figure out, even though we often choose poorly, and find ourselves in need of repentance.
But what about those moments when it's hard to know what to do, which way to choose? What happens when we have multiple options before us, and it's hard to decide? How do you choose one career move over another? One treatment option over another? One relationship over another?
How do you figure out what God might be calling you to do in terms of your life's mission? How do you find your purpose?
In Psalm 142, the psalmist is crying out to God for help, protection and guidance. He feels trapped, immobilized and beset upon from all sides by difficult decisions and challenges. And then he prays, "When my spirit grows faint within me, it is you who watch over my way...."
The question you need to ask yourself as you prayerfully consider your future is simply this, "Am I desiring God, first and foremost in all of this?" And if the answer to that question is an emphatic "Yes!" then you need to be ready to act. At some point, we simply need to surrender the outcomes, and step forward in faith, and trust that God will guide and order our steps.
May you turn your heart toward a desire for God today and ever day. May you find in that desire the very peace and confidence you seek to step forward in faith--knowing that the One who loves you more than anyone is watching over your way.
And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.