For all of us, life has periods of time when things are difficult. We have to make hard decisions, tough choices and all of this on limited information, because no one can see the future. There are loads of people from the stock investor who’s “tip” just talked to the guy who got a ticket the other day on Palm Bay Road that would like to have had a little ability to see what was coming and make a wiser choice for their life.
For the Christ follower, it is difficult as well, but one of the perks of knowing Christ, is that God has told us that He is both on our side and working for His glory, which includes having our best interests at heart. While we make decisions under duress, over taxed, beside ourselves and without full knowledge, He does not. He knows it all. The concept of sin is basically what God has set up, not as something bad for us, but to help us understand when we are taking a path that is not beneficial to us…one that is not in line with God’s plan.
So how do we follow that? Does God just reprogram our brains? Nope…we deal with the struggle throughout our lives, but God has given us a help to understand the way to success in life. Psalm 119:11 gives us a winning strategy from the writer to help us. It says “I have hidden Your word in my heart, that I might not sin against You [God].”
The Word is the Bible and this verse tells us that a step toward avoiding the wrong path is learning and putting God’s Word inside your heart (and your mind) to help you make the right decisions in life. It’s not just a rule book, but the Bible also tells us that the Word is “living and active”, which means that when you digest it into your mind and heart, it begins to change and fix you from the inside out…and many times, it fixes things you didn’t really see getting fixed. All of a sudden, although you haven’t read a verse that says “don’t be selfish”, for some reason, you or others begin to realize that you are less selfish. Things like that.
That’s why I advocate being a Christ follower to people who wish to find a successful direction in life. Even if you took out the fact that it’s His world and He created you and the whole “He absolutely deserves to be worshipped” thing, without those most compelling reasons to follow Him, it’s still the best bet to successfully navigate your life.
By Jim Campbell, First Baptist Church of Melbourne