“There can come a time in the process of God leading you out of your life of sin and rebellion and into his perfect plan and purpose for your life when you look up and see something that you thought you had already defeated closing in on you with more force than ever before. It makes you question whether you ever should have left the place you were to begin with. If you have never experienced that then you have never done anything by faith. And if you have never experienced that then maybe it is because the enemy doesn’t need to chase you….because he has you right where he wants you. It is actually easier to live, in some senses, in the predictability of slavery than in the uncertainty of freedom.”
Think about what is being said in the above quote by Steven Furtick. There are moments in life where you can feel God tugging at your heart and trying to lead you down the right path. But it is never as simple as just following that feeling of what you know is right. When God is trying to lead you down His path there are so many things that try to pull you back. Maybe in college you partied, drank, and were living a life you wouldn’t be too proud to tell your parents about. Maybe that is the life you are living right now. You want to change, but your friends still expect the “old” you. So when you are with them you continue to act like your old self because of those expectations. Maybe you are taking things too far with your girlfriend and you feel like it’s a one-way street you can’t turn around on. Be upfront with her about the life you want to live. Think about the big picture of life and where you want to be in the future. Are the decisions you are making right now lining up with the future expectations of your life?
Where are you looking to find your identity? Maybe you are looking in two different places depending on your current situation. When you are at church or at home with your family you are pleasing God, but when you hang out with certain friends you choose to please man. One important thing to know is…you cannot please both man and God…so you need to make a decision. If you continue to straddle the fence then the enemy has you right where he wants you.
Sometimes just thinking about having those conversations with your friends causes you to continue down the same path. Be upfront with your friends about who you are and what you believe in. Stand for something! If you do not stand for anything, you will fall for everything. Yes…there will be tough conversations, but that is part of growing as a man or women. You can’t keep avoiding what you know is right…that usually has a rough ending and the conversations will be even tougher at that point. Start living a life that you can be proud to tell people about. Having these conversations with your friends and girlfriends will only make your friendships stronger and more meaningful. It is one thing to have a drinking buddy, but it is a whole other story when someone is willing to take on life with you. The road is not going to be easy. You will continually be tempted to go back to things you were doing before. You will wonder if it was even worth it to give up those things. “You already messed up once…what will one more time do?” Thoughts like that will test your faith every single day. That is why it is important to have friends who are with you on this journey…through the good and the bad.
My grandfather once told me this, “When you look back on the journey of life it all comes down to decision making. There are plenty of very smart people that make poor decisions and it negatively impacts their life and many times dilutes or completely negates years of diligence and effort leading up to that point.” In a nutshell, good decision making is a tough and critical component of life. A lot of you reading this are at an age where you will have more and more life choices to make—and they just keep coming. When you come to these points in your life and you have a decision to make…know that good, thought-out, Christ centered decision making builds on itself.
God doesn’t need you to clean up before you present yourself to Him. He wants you just as you are.
What is the biggest decision you have made in your life?