Heather and I were in a local store the other day, and as we were making our way down this one particular aisle, a small child was walking happily along, but with his head turned to the side. He was on a crash course with me. Whether you’re a parent or not, you’ve seen this happen before. I saw this in my children when they were younger. In this particular situation, the father who was walking with the child is looking ahead, and then has the perspective that sees this collision is about to occur, and says what?
You know what he says. He says, ‘Watch where you’re going.’ And then lovingly takes the child’s little head, turns it to look forward, and the crisis between small child and large 6’4” man is averted.
And such is the case so often in our walk with Christ. In Christ, we are adopted and God now is not only Judge and Creator, but Father. He is a perfect, Heavenly Father who cares for and loves His children, and gives us the Holy Spirit to lead, guide, and direct our lives.
Sometimes, if we are not walking closely with the Lord, if we are not in His Word, and in community and close friendship with other believers, if we are not walking in the light, confessing sin, and pursuing humility in Christ, we are can find ourselves looking away, and on a collision course with something.
Andy Stanley, a pastor, says this, “Direction, not intention, determines your destination.”
What direction is your life headed right now? As you review the choices and decisions you’ve made over the past week, or month, or 6 months, what do they reveal about your direction? Because we can’t lie to ourselves and say that our goal is to become more like Christ, and reflect Him to the world, and yet look back and not be able to point to any choices we’ve made that would lead to such a destination.
Where in your life are you like that little child, head turned, looking over at something or someone, instead of fixing your eyes on what is ahead? Or in the case of a Christ follower, fixing your eyes on Jesus? Where in your life is your Heavenly Father lovingly trying to redirect your head and eyesight to what He sees is up ahead? Does Jesus have the full attention of your heart and affections? Is there a lingering area that you’re struggling to surrender and lay before Him?
Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”
When we lean on our own understanding, we are much like that little child, assuming everything is fine, happily strolling along, but on track to land in a destination we never intended or desired.
I don’t know about you, but in my life, I’ve had plenty of moments like that little child. Where I’ve ignored God’s voice to turn, to look up. And as a result, I’ve found myself entangled in sin, or away from life giving community, or walking by sight instead of faith, or with a heart that has grown cold to the great mission of Jesus.
I’m not sure where you’re at as you read this post, but I’m thankful that almighty God does and is at work in each of our lives, drawing us close to Him.
If your head is turned toward something other than Jesus, I pray you’d respond to the grace of God that calls you to lean on Him in everything, and fix your eyes on Him above all else. Or maybe you find yourself already having collided or at a destination, you never dreamed you’d be. If that is you, I want to remind you of God’s beautiful, powerful grace that still invites you home. That even if you find yourself in pig slop (Luke 15), the Father welcomes you home with loving arms!
Watch where you’re going…