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Saturday, January 02, 2016

Two Ways To Live

2016. Day one is almost over. I like it and I don't. I like the fact it feels like a new start. We like numbers and time. God created time, though He Himself is beyond space and time. A "new" year starts and we think of starting over, new changes, new adventures, new whatever. But nothing has changed. We are still where we were yesterday. Nothing is really new. We still have two choices to live. We can live our way or God's way. It's that simple.

Today my reading was Psalm 1 (read below). It shows two paths one can take. The path everyone seems to be taking and the path few people take. Psalm 1 is really an introduction to the whole book of Psalms. It shows two ways to live. I have to admit, it always challenges me. Following the first path is easy. It is the path that follows "the advice of the wicked" or takes "the path of sinners," or joins "a group of mockers." All of these are really one and the same. It is the path of those that choose to live their way but really is living like everyone else. It's the path that follows the leader that is in charge of our cosmos. It is the path of those that follow the culture. The path that is relative, adjusting to everyone's whims. There is really no right and wrong. Even those who call themselves Christians get caught up here.

The second path is the one that follows the person that this Psalm calls "blessed." This is the person that instead of following the path all take, decide to delight "in the Lord's instruction," and "meditates on it day and night." The person that focuses on God's intruction and makes it THE priority of his life is blessed by God. This is hard work. They must read Scripture (the Bible) daily and submit themselves to God in obedience. They make God's instruction something they meditate on day and night. If we are honest, most of us just barely read Scripture, much the less meditate it and thus never obey it. But this blessing doesn't mean they get are exempt from any suffering or tragedy. It means that ultimately God will reward their faithfulness. This person is really the "blessed" one. Don't get me wrong, I am tempted to take the easy way. There is just no work involved. My natural inclination is not to follow God's path but my path. My tendency is to choose what is easy and expedient.

Jesus said, "Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it. How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it." - Matthew 7:13-14 (HCSB)

That's exactly how it is! Here we are in the first day of 2016. We have two ways to live: your way or God's way. Where are you headed? I'm taking the way of Wisdom, the narrow, God's path. This is in no way easy, it wasn't easy today either. I faced the pull of my own self leading me in the easy path. But I'm not alone. The one who tells me to follow Him, goes with me. He will never leave me nor forsake me. Never. In the end, it is all worth it!
*Read about the Two Ways to Live Here.

Psalm 1
1 How happy is the man
who does not follow the advice of the wicked
or take the path of sinners
or join a group of mockers!
2 Instead, his delight is in the Lord’s instruction,
and he meditates on it day and night.
3 He is like a tree planted beside streams of water
that bears its fruit in season,
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers.
4 The wicked are not like this;
instead, they are like chaff that the wind blows away.
5 Therefore the wicked will not survive the judgment,
and sinners will not be in the community of the righteous.
6 For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked leads to ruin. (HCSB)

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