|Posted on July 24, 2019 at 7:50 AM|
Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. Mark out a straight path for your feet; stay on the safe path. Don’t get side tracked; keep your feet from following evil. Proverbs 4:25-27
I was watching a movie the other night about a woman with autism called Please Stand By. She lived in an assisted living home and her “house mom” went over her daily schedule with her. From sun up to sun down every hour had a purpose every moment of her day mapped out by the next. Similar to her routine I have my own.
When my grandchildren read my journal they will see that yesterday I read devotionals. Walked on treadmill. Watched a teaching. Washed a load of clothes. Cleaned my bathroom. Washed the towels. Vacuumed. Mopped the floors. Finished a bible study. Wrote a letter to my nephew. Emptied the kid pool out back. Refilled it. Helped take apart a broken canopy. Made dinner- fish. Watched a movie. Nothing exciting but every hour of my day was filled with a purpose I had planned at the beginning of my day. I looked straight ahead and fixed my eyes on what was before me. I didn’t sit around discouraged about my yesterday. Disappointed about a past I could not change. Making up for time that had been lost. I just did what I could with the time I had today and hoped that it was enough.
When my ancestors traveled the land in search of their promised place they made a point to tell the kings in each territory “We will stay on the king’s road and never leave it until we have passed through your territory.” Numbers 20:17 and 21:22, Deuteronomy 2:27. They didn’t want what wasn’t theirs so why step off the road and search. Even when they were denied passage they repeated “We will stay on the main road.” Numbers 20:19 and not get sidetracked.
There have been times in my daily routine when I wasn’t able to do the things I had planned ahead of the day because I allowed myself to get sidetracked. Whether it was something on the internet that caught my attention, a movie, a marathon of a repeat show on TV or when I was doing one thing, then left it to do something else and another thing came up. Only to find none of the tasks I originally set out to do was completed at the end of the day. Just a bunch of tasks half way completed. I did not keep my feet from getting distracted.
Stay on the path that the LORD your God has commanded you to follow. Then you will live long and prosperous lives in the land you are about to enter and occupy. Deuteronomy 5:33
I am grateful to know that even when I do get side tracked I can easily turn around and go back to the things I had done before. There are some routines in my life that never change like having my bed made. The laundry will always need washed, dried, hung, folded and put away. The trash will need to be taken out, the cans put away. The dishes washed and put away, the kitchen counters wiped. The floors vacuumed, swept and mopped. Some things can wait but not too long like the dusting, filing and the brushing of the dogs. Food will always need to be made and served. These simple little routines that make up the straight path that is my everyday life help me to keep my mind and my hands from doing what is evil in the LORD’s sight.
Follow the steps of good men instead, and stay on the paths of the righteous. For only the godly will live in the land, and those with integrity will remain in it. Proverbs 2:20
God once said in Jeremiah 8:4-5 “When people fall down, don’t they get up again? When they discover they’re on the wrong road, don’t they turn back? Then why do these people stay on their self-destructive path? Why do the people of Jerusalem refuse to turn back? They cling tightly to their lies and will not turn around.”
For a long time I used to think like that, that since I already messed up there was no turning back to get back on the right path. If I lied why not lie more to cover up the first. If I had one drink why not have one more. If I bought something I didn’t really need why not buy even more. If I spent a hundred what is a thousand more. One self-destructive decision after another took me further and further from the path I should have been on. In tears I finally begged God through Psalm 25:4-5 Show me the right path, O LORD; point out the road for me to follow. Lead me by Your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in You. And it wasn’t so much as a hard thing but a daily decision I had to make to discipline myself with consistency to stay on the path He set out in front of me to keep these idle hands so busy doing what was good so I would not be led astray.
But I did find this: God created people to be virtuous, but they have each turned to follow their own downward path. Ecclesiastes 7:29