He is on the path of life who heeds instruction, but he who ignores reproof goes astray.
In order to discover God’s will, we ought to listen to the authority figures in our lives and surround ourselves with wise counselors. We should also seek the advice of other Christians. By consulting fellow Christians, we develop the quality of dependence. Our Western mindset says our individual relationship with God is all that matters, but the Bible says we are accountable to and dependent on one another in the body of Christ.
Fellow Christians can offer us insight concerning our dilemmas. A great illustration of this is found in Exodus 18, while Moses was leading the nation of Israel. One day, his father-in-law, Jethro, saw something that disturbed him: “Moses sat to judge the people, and the people stood about Moses from the morning until the evening. Now when Moses’ father-in-law saw all that he was doing for the people, he said, ‘What is this thing that you are doing for the people? . . . You will surely wear out’” (vv. 13–14, 18). Then Jethro prescribed a course of action. He said, in essence, “Moses, if you teach the people the principles of God’s Word, they could solve a lot of their problems on their own. And you need to appoint judges to handle the rest of their concerns.” How did Moses respond? Verse 24 says, “Moses listened to his father-in-law and did all that he had said.” Fellow believers can give us insight concerning our dilemmas.
Fellow Christians also offer us guidance concerning our decisions. Let’s say you’ve been praying about how to spend your time in a way that makes an eternal difference. One day, you get a call from a leader at your church who says, “We need somebody to serve in this area, and we think you’re the person to do it.” God may be speaking through that leader to give you guidance about what you need to do.
Finally, fellow Christians offer us correction to our behavior. Years ago, a woman in the church said to me, “Robert, there’s an area in your life you need to correct. If you don’t, it will destroy your ministry.” My first thought was, Who are you to tell a man of God how to act? But then I realized she was telling the truth. I praise God for putting somebody in my life who was willing to tell me not what I wanted to hear but what I needed to hear.
Are there people in your life who care about you enough to tell you when you’re going the wrong way? And when they tell you, do you listen, or do you rebel? Proverbs 10:17 says, “He is on the path of life who heeds instruction, but he who ignores reproof goes astray.” When we are going down the wrong road, God may get our attention through fellow Christians. We are accountable to one another in the body of Christ.
Today’s devotion is adapted from “Who Speaks for God?” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2008.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org.