If you are a born-again believer, you really do not have a choice of the path that your life is going to take, you may make plans, if you so desire, but it would be unwise to put full stock in them. “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” (Gal. 2:20)
What that means is that all of your desires and wants outside of Christ are now irrelevant, they hold no value in the eternal, but with the blessing of free will, you may still pursue them if you so desire. In doing so, you must realize one thing, there will be no continuing satisfaction in these pursuits, they will be fleeting, as different from night and day, the temporary, the things of this world and all it offers can never be compared to the eternal. And I do not only mean the pleasures forevermore (Psalm 16:11) that will be available in the hereafter, for many of the things that we do here as we walk with the Lord will last throughout eternity. “And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.” (Mark 10:29-30)
Many of these things that we receive here of the material world are not always looked at with favor, for two simple words in that verse many like to skip over, “with persecutions.” From what or from whom is up to the Lord, no matter what direction they come from they are for His glory and that is all that matters. If they are the things and items of this world, then we are to listen to the Holy Spirit as to how we are to effectively use them, as you can guess, for the glory of God, when, not if, the persecutions come, we are to rejoice in them, for in times of trouble, when we are at our weakest, He is strongest, (2 Cor. 13:9) we have no choice at these times but to rely on Him, what we should always be doing no matter the circumstances or how we feel.
Tired, upset, frustrated, angry, that’s all right, these things are expected, continue to serve, continue to seek His face. “O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is.” (Psalm 63:1) As well as beside the still waters. (Psalm 23:2)
This life is supposed to be frustrating to us, it is supposed to be hated by us when we fall out of His will, what purpose could the joy of heaven serve to anyone who knew no pain, no sorrow, no tribulation in this life. There is a great thirst for righteousness inside of those who seek the face of God, who see the sin of the world on a daily basis and recognize it as such, who know the pain of their own shortcomings, who choose the path of most resistance. Most generally the world does the opposite, it remains on the path of least resistance, it does not see the journey as worthy of the destination if there are too many possible pit falls, if it is too difficult, if it requires much effort, the path that gets them what they want at the quickest rate is usually the one they will take, and soon for many of them, that path becomes a comfortable rut.
Welcome to the life of the “church goer,” the same pew, the expected time of song, prayer, plate, and closing, just another Sunday, just part of the weeks routine.
We have free will, we can make all the plans we want to, all you need to do is ask yourself each time, how this will glorify God, because if it does not, all you are attempting to do is take a vacation from the work that He has laid before you. “A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.” (Prov. 16:9) I do not hear a lot about free will in that verse, but I do see a lot of people that claim to be followers of Christ making plans, plans of their own devices, plans that are encompassed by their supposed free will. I did not plan this life in Christ that I have now, in fact, it was the furthest thing from my mind, nevertheless, He has directed my steps, I did not only need to follow Him, I also needed to obey. Make all the plans you want to, but do not put much stock in them, whether you believe they will glorify God or not, He may change them tomorrow. “For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.” (James 4:15) Our Father in heaven always knows what is best, trust Him and obey in love.