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Which Direction Are You Swimming?

Today you will be confronted with a number of decisions. Some big, others small. When you were getting dressed you decided whether to wear brown or blue. Throughout the day you will need to decide which tasks to do today and which to postpone until another day. While those are often important decisions, they are also sometimes done without too much thought. Other decisions though, are not quite as easy, sometimes even with long term consequences. Are you seeking God’s counsel?

Still other decisions are a choice between right and wrong, good and evil, justice and injustice. Sometimes those decisions require us to stand alone, to go against the flow, to swim upstream. We must decide whether we will be faithful to God, often meaning we swim upstream, or to go with the crowd by swimming with the current. A new business deal smells a little fishy. It could be very lucrative but also violates a number of your principles. “That’s just how business works” is what crosses your mind. It’s late at night, the family is in bed, and you cannot sleep so you sit at your computer and look at sexually graphic images. “What can it really hurt; I’m just trying to relax so I can sleep.” On a Friday afternoon the office talks turns to gossip and slander. You think to yourself, “It’s just harmless water cooler chatter,” but you also know that it is wrong to talk that way.

The Bible tells us that Satan is active in this world and loves nothing more than to trip us up, causing us to sin and turn our backs on God. In 1 Peter 5:8 we read this warning – “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

We also know that the Holy Spirit, who resides within every follower of Jesus, can equip and guide us in all we do and say, both in the big and the little. Scripture tells us that the Holy Spirit guides us into God’s will (Psalm 143:10), guides us to live according to God’s Word (Ezekiel 36:27), guides us away from sin (Galatians 5:16) and into truth (John 16:13).

The writer of Hebrews ends the book this way – “Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” (13:20-21)

In this world, to follow Jesus, we must usually swim upstream, against the flow. Today we ask you, which direction are you swimming?

Dave Garrett

New Bern, North Carolina

3/28/2017

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