God’s Guidance; August 8, 2022

Psalm 5:8 Lead me, O Lord, in your righteousness
because of my enemies–
make straight your way before me.

It’s interesting how word order in a sentence changes the feel of it, even when it doesn’t change the actual meaning. The Japanese renders this as, “O Lord, because there are those who lie in wait for me, lead me by Your righteousness. Please make Your way straight in front of me.” That doesn’t feel the same as the well-known musical setting of this verse! David had plenty of visible human enemies. We might have that, but even if we don’t we certainly have the devil who is always out to “steal, kill, and destroy.” (John 10:10) And then we have our own ignorance and foolishness to contend with! We have plenty of reason to ask God for His guidance. With us, the perennial problem is whether we will follow God’s guidance when He gives it. That goes back to the verse I preached on just yesterday: “For God does speak–now one way, now another– though man may not perceive it.” (Job 33:14) God can be guiding very clearly, and we still decide to take a left turn! Men are notorious for not asking directions, but this problem doesn’t respect gender. It all boils down to pride, just as it did in the Garden of Eden, when Eve thought that disobeying God might make her be like God. (Genesis 3:5) Joy Dawson, who died recently, wrote an extremely helpful guide to hearing from God, and one of the main points was “dying to the issue about which you are praying.” In other words, completely surrendering the issue at hand to God. That’s more easily said than done! We have our own ideas and desires, and when God’s guidance conflicts with those we are all too likely to ignore God. We need to remember that we indeed have an enemy who is lying in wait for us, and his intentions are never good. With that awareness, we need to submit fully to the only One who can truly protect and guide us. (James 4:7)

I am eternally grateful for the way God has guided me, often in spite of myself. I referenced some of that in yesterday’s message! I have issues every day where my choices make a difference. I’m not to abandon the mind God has given me, but I must always remember that my mind is never enough. I need God’s guidance! However, I’m not to be anxious about it, but rest in the assurance that God will indeed guide me, if I will simply be quiet enough before Him to hear Him. I am fairly often asked for advice, for guidance if you will. I must not reject such requests, but always seek to point those who ask to the only One who can be completely trusted. I know that God has used me many times in such situations, but I must never presume I already have the answers. Guidance is ultimately God’s business, because only He knows the true destination and what we will encounter along the way.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for yesterday and all that You did in it. Thank You for today, and Your plans for it as well. My schedule looks very full, but You always make enough time for everything You intend for me to do. I do ask for discernment as I evaluate my Speech Therapy students this morning in their performance examination, that I would be fair and accurate. I ask also for skill and guidance as I set up my photo exhibit this afternoon, and also for things to go smoothly as Cathy meets the piano tuner this afternoon for him to evaluate the piano we received. May all of Your plans be fulfilled on Your schedule for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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