Let us Give Careful Thought to Our Ways

In the first chapter of Haggai, the Lord urges his people to consider their ways (vs5-6): “Now this is what the Lord Almighty says, ‘Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much but have harvested little. You eat but never have enough. You drink but never have your fill. You put on clothes but are not warm. You earn wages only to put them in a purse with holes in it’”.

Now when we consider our ways we will always know what the Lord requires of us, even as Joshua was told by the angel of the Lord: “This is what the Lord Almighty says, ‘If you will walk in my ways and keep my requirements, then you will govern my house and have charge of my courts and I will give you a place among these standing here’” (Zechariah 3:7). The Lord wanted Joshua to follow His pathway to teach and judge wisely.

Samuel also wisely addresses the people of Israel on how he has shown them the way: “I have listened to everything you said to me and have set a king over you. Now you have a king as your leader. As for me, I am old and grey and my sons are here with you. I have been your leader from my youth until this day. Here I stand. Testify against me in the presence of the Lord and his anointed. Whose ox have I taken? Whose donkey have I taken? Whom have I cheated? Whom have I oppressed? From whose hand have I accepted a bribe to make me shut my eyes? If I have done any of these, I will make it right” (1 Samuel 12:1-3). He goes on again: “Moreover, as for me, God forbid that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you, but I will teach you the good and the right way. Only fear the Lord and serve him in truth with all your heart, for consider how great things he hath done for you” (verses 23, 24).

The psalmist appeals to the Lord: “Teach me your way, O Lord; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors. Do not hand me over to the desire of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing out violence” (Psalm 27:11,12). “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go. I will counsel you and watch over you” (Psalm 32:8).

When considering the ways in which we should live, King Solomon gives us wise words: “The highway of the upright is to depart from evil; he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul” (Proverbs 16:17).

Isaiah gives his vision: “And a highway will be there: it will be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not journey on it, it will be for those who walk in that way; wicked fools will not go about on it” (Isaiah 35:8). “Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will have a voice behind you saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it’” (Isaiah 30;21).

Jesus sums up the careful thoughts that we should have as we seek the truth: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No-one comes to the Father except through me’ (John 14:6).

Even David asked the Lord to show him the way: “Show me your ways, O Lord teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Saviour” (Psalm 25:4,5).

Bro & Sis Phiri (Chegutu, Zimbabwe)

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