Two Paths

Two Paths

1 Corinthians 15:32,33 If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.” Do not be deceived…  Wake up from your drunken stupor, as is right, and do not go on sinning.

Paul, in today’s passage, described two paths in life.  On the first, there is no God, and thus, no reason to live for anything but self.  On the Godless path, I become god and live only for my desires.  Nothing matters but living how I choose.  My purpose and pleasure come only from the gratification I find in pursuing me.  On the other path, God is at the center of all things and my only proper response is to love and pursue him above all.  With God at the center, the appetites of my flesh seem petty as I realize the joy and purpose I find in knowing him.

As I pondered this passage yesterday, I automatically began dividing everyone I know, placing them on one path or the other.  As this seemed pretty judgmental, I turned my gaze inward (as I should).  I was quite tempted to divide my life into BA (before addiction) and AA (after addiction).  I very much like to think that I used to have problems.  I like to think that as I follow God now, I have no more struggles.  I’m always on God’s path, right?

I started thinking then, of the last time I made a choice on the first path, following me.  I did not have to go back three years.  I did not have to go back three days.  Though I never stop believing that God is at the center of it all, I do not always live like it.  I always believe in the rightness of God’s path, I just often live on the me-path.  Though I never actually believe that I am at the center, I naturally want to live that way.  I believe in God but I still follow me.

I recently met with an addict who just came to understand this.  Previously he had been greatly vexed by his continual desire for everything he believed to be evil. Why am I this way?  Why do I do what I don’t want to do?  He came to realize that it is simply not our nature to follow God, but to follow our own desires.  This was an epiphany.

Though I always believe in the path that follows God, it is a continual choice to make my feet walk that path.  In not choosing God’s path, I will almost always find my feet walking the path of me.  It is in passivity and apathy that I do not choose and it is in not choosing that I have made the wrong choice.  Then, when I look up and find myself in treatment, I wonder why.  How did I get here? 

I got there by not purposefully choosing the path of God.  I thought my knowledge of God was enough to keep me on the right path.  As I was saved once by faith, I thought walking the right path was a once-for-all decision.  It is not though.  Following God, instead of self, is a decision I must make a hundred times a day.  If I do not consciously make the right choice, I have already made the wrong choice.

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  1. Wendy Haider says:

    Amen! Great words! I have always said to myself and others, when I was a lot younger and not knowing much of the word of God that there are two paths to follow in life..The path where we lead the way or the path that God has chosen for us and if we’re willing to follow his lead makes is a better person..It’s ironic how saying something that I really didn’t even know what the meaning was and how it became played a huge part in my older years of my life! I definitely didn’t follow the path of God many times of my life, like you, the pleasures out weighed anything else! I’ve always told myself that saying I started to say probably when I was 12, However, following my own words was just to much work, thinking, feeling and applying what I would learn and believe from the words of God. Now that is definitely selfish on my part! I didn’t apply the words I would tell myself over and over again till treatment..Oh, However.. I wasn’t going to and didn’t want to follow no stupid rules that were in place.. I wasn’t a child! I bucked the system that first two weeks and was so surprised they didn’t just kick me out.. I’ve known the 12 Steps for many years as my father was an alcoholic..Now it was my turn to look at them, believe them, and follow them all with Gods guidance..That didn’t happen until I found myself teaching others what the 12 Steps meant for me without even thinking about it..That was it..That moment of helping and treating others as I wanted to be treated came to life..I had a great desire to follow the 12 Steps and God! Is that how I feel everyday? Even if I don’t want to, I need to for my own sake and others!

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