“Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” – Psalm 16:11
“Come and hear, all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he hath done for my soul. I cried unto him with my mouth, and he was extolled with my tongue. If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me: But verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor his mercy from me.” – Psalm 66:16-20
A strange but very cool thing has happened to me in recent months. The Lord has started helping me to write songs (James 1:17). Today, I feel led to share with you the words of the most recent song, “Don’t Take That Road”. Let these words sink in, and then I’ll talk a little more about them:
I’ve been around long enough to know that each of us has a bad road that beckons to us (Proverbs 22:3, Ephesians 6:10-13). No matter how well we clean up on Sunday, we all have sins of the heart that forever pull at us and try to drag us away from God’s will and the work that He wants to do in our hearts and in our lives. Maybe you struggle with depression (Psalms 9:9). Maybe you struggle with pride, a mind that runs in the wrong direction, or a mouth that simply won’t stop running (James 4:6, Proverbs 21:27, Ephesians 4:29). Maybe you long for things that you know you shouldn’t have (Romans 8:6-8). Maybe you catch yourself listening to the world more than you listen to the Word (Psalm 1:1-2). Maybe you catch yourself loving your stuff more than you love your Savior (I John 2:15-17).
When we think of people going astray, prodigal sons, and lost sheep, we think of big, ugly sins – the kind of stuff that makes the six o’clock news and lands people in rehab. But can I tell you, Satan’s purposes are just as easily served by the sins that fly under the radar – the sins of the heart and the mind. These are still sins in and of themselves, regardless of whether or not they lead to more obvious stuff. And even if you can keep them inside, they will still keep a wedge between you and God (Psalm 66:18, Romans 3:23).
My plea to you – don’t take that road. Don’t settle for being clean enough to pass inspection on Sunday. Make sure that every aspect of your life, your heart, and your mind passes God’s inspection (Psalm 139:23-24). You can’t fool Him, but you can call on Him to help you battle anything that stands between the two of you (II Timothy 2:3-4). Hold on to Him (James 4:8). Let His Word guide your thoughts, your actions, your every step (Psalm 119:105). He is the Way (John 14:6), His will is the path you want (Psalm 23:3), and if you draw near to Him, He will draw a beautiful picture of grace with your life.
What road are you on today? Check the direction of your heart and mind, and make sure that you are heading in God’s direction. If not, ask Him to help you make a “you-turn”, and get back where you belong.