Two different paths on the journey of life, which do I choose? - 8 July 2019

Ewald Schmidt

“The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.  The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.” Romans 8:6-7 (NIV)

One night, after visiting some parish members on a farm, I got lost on my way back home. I was driving in our small family car, and somehow I took a wrong turn and got onto the farm’s 4x4 trail. I was not overly concerned, because I see myself as the adventurous type, and this challenge seemed manageable at the time. It seemed as though everything was going quite well, and I was impressed by my own driving skills by the time I reached home. But my joy was short-lived when I saw our little car in the light of day the next morning. That small car was not designed to drive over a 4x4 trail, even though I felt comfortable attempting to do this. The car had suffered damage, in spite of my feelings of accomplishment the previous night.

We are on a journey of life, you and me. The question today is not about the roads we feel comfortable to drive on, but for which road our lives were designed? The Apostle Paul tells us of a road that may seem quite passable, but the destination at the end of that road is death. This is the path of our flesh, and we were born on this path. I am the driver of my own life when I live according to the desires of my flesh. I like to put my foot on the accelerator, but I do not enjoy applying any brakes on my desires. Because we are living outside of God’s plans for us when we follow this road, the end result of this journey is death. We miss the purpose that God has planned for our lives. We were not designed to walk this path, and it damages everything we hold dear when our fleshly desires are out of control.

The alternative is to be guided by the Spirit of God on our journey of life. Then we are living the life God has intended for us. This path of life is recognised by the stamp of approval of the Holy Spirit. It is seen through a lifestyle that speaks of a living walk with God, and healthy relationships with the people around me – my neighbours. This path is known for bringing life and peace. The journey of life gets to be an adventure in the Spirit, and the destination we aim for holds no fear, but fills us with hope.

For which journey do I sign up? Which path has God designed for me today?

Prayer: Lord, I may have enjoyed the journey of my fleshly desires in the past. I might have strayed far from where you wanted me to be, but this path has turned out to be deadly, and is hurting the people around me. Holy Spirit, take control over my life, and lead me back to the proven path, the way of life where I shall know the peace and the love of the Lord in everything I do. Amen

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