If you have traveled much, especially in your line of work, you will be very familiar with the importance of road markers along the highways and roads that you traveled. These markers could come in the form of highway signs, mile markers, mileage signs, or just familiar landmarks. These markers let you know that you are on the right path and making progress toward your pre-determined destination.
The same is true in our spiritual life. We have a predetermined destination that is revealed to us in Scripture which tells us what our destination in this life is to be. ESV Romans 8:29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, reveals our destination as being “conformed to His image. And, as with all travels, we have road markers along the way that indicate if we are on the right path and making progress toward our destination.
We once had a friend who got confused on his destination when traveling to a local city. Instead of traveling on the highway leading to the desired destination, he got on the wrong road and traveled for 2 hours in the wrong direction. His intentions were good, but his destination was wrong and he did not end up where he thought he would end up.
We must know how to recognize the spiritual road markers on our journey of life. Jesus tells us there are basically two roads we can travel; the straight and narrow road that leads to life and the broad road that leads to destruction. (Mt. 7:13-14). Which road are you on? There are only two choices and it is important that we understand which road we are traveling and that we be able to read the road markers along the way and that we also recognize road blocks. Too often we create our own spiritual road blocks by refusing to follow (pride) the map (Bible); trying to take short cuts; or simply not preparing for the journey at all and finding ourselves broken down along the way.
How often do we find ourselves at the wrong destination? How often do we head into a journey without taking the time to discover the right path. We are predestined to “become” not to do, yet how often do we hear things like, “I’m called to be a doctor, or I’m called to be a stay at home mom, or I’m called to be a business man”, or even “I’m called to sing in the choir”. We recognize these “callings” by what we do, not who we are. A good or bad person can do any one of these, so “being” has little to do with these works in our life. All of these are good, but they are not our calling but our vocation and our vocation is always secondary to our calling. We are first called to be conformed to the image of Christ and out of that state of “being”, we are then called to “do” our life’s vocation(s).
So how do we know if we are on the right road and if we are making spiritual progress? Matthew’s gospel records a very popular portion of Scripture called The Sermon on the Mount, found in chapters 5-7. The first twelve verses reveal to us the attitudes important in the life of the believer. The remaining 2+ chapters reveal to us the lifestyle of the believer or how we are to live. Interestingly, He instructs us how to “be” before He instructs us on what to “do”. These first twelve verses are known as the “Beatitudes” or more commonly referred to as the “Be-Attitudes”. This is how we are to know if we are on the right road. Are these attitudes present in your life? If they are, then we can be assured we are traveling the right path. If they are not, then we may need to consider the path we are on and make a change lest we find ourselves at a destination we had not planned. I began this teaching last Sunday and a CD if available from the church or through our website.
So how do we begin? We begin with prayer. Join me in praying and asking the Holy Spirit to guide you in the days ahead.
Holy Spirit, I ask that you would guide my journey in life and reveal to me areas in my life that are on the wrong road. I ask that you reveal to me road blocks of my own making. I ask that you guide me and allow me to see clearly what is off course in my life. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen
Jeremiah 6:16 Thus says the LORD: “Stand in the ways and see, And ask for the old paths, where the good way is, And walk in it; Then you will find rest for your souls.