Destruction and Distractions
God has a plan and purpose for each of our lives. Whether we follow it or not is entirely up to us. His vacation destination for us is heaven, and His desire is for us to be “with Him”!
It is easy to get distracted and stray onto another path, the beaten, well-worn path that many sadly choose instead. Many things in life can entice us and pull us off of the road less traveled.
Matthew cautions us, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.” (Matt. 7:13 NIV) God knows we are too quick to lose focus, and He encourages us by telling us …”DON’T GET SIDETRACKED; keep your feet from following evil (Prov. 4:24).”
How can we do this? God is the Great Teacher and gives us clear instruction in Prov. 4:25-26. “LOOK STRAIGHT AHEAD and FIX YOUR EYES on what lies before you. 26 Mark out a straight path for your feet; stay on the safe path.” The Apostle Paul adds to this beginning in Hebrew chapter 11 and continuing into chapter 12:1-2.
The 11th chapter of Hebrews is known as the “Hall of Faith” and speaks of those who conquered this world by their faith in God. Beginning with Heb. 11:39-40 (NLT) –
“All these people earned a good reputation because of their faith, yet none of them received all that God had promised. For God had something better in mind for us, so that they would not reach perfection without us.” (Heb 11:39-40)
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by KEEPING OUR EYES ON JESUS, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.” (Heb 12:1-2)
So, what do we do if we find ourselves off of the road less traveled? We regain focus, fix our heart on what is important . . . JESUS, and do what I call the “forget and press” . . . the Philippian’s bench press, (like a weightlifter.)
The Apostle Paul wrote, “I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I PRESS ON to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I FOCUS on this one thing: FORGETTING THE PAST and LOOKING FORWARD to what lies, ahead, I PRESS ON to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” (Philippians 3:12-14)
Please, my friend, do not let your past dictate your future. This is the beginning of a New Year. Time to make new resolutions. Why not resolve to follow Jesus. He has already gone before you and has made your travel plans. Trust in Him. He still delivers!