The Way that Seems Right
There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death. —Proverbs 16:25
Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD, and turn away from evil. —Proverbs 3:7
Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. —Proverbs 4:26
When a man's ways please the LORD, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.
The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.—Proverbs 16:9
Not a day goes by that you and I don’t make decisions that turn the direction of our lives. We base some of our choices on what we know for sure; others are judgment calls. Proverbs 16:25 has a built-in alarm system that warns us, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.” When you base your decisions on what seems right to you, flags should fly up all around when you read this verse. Its caution is so specific and so current that we need to take every word seriously.
Notice, “There is a way . . .” not there was a way. This warning is not leftover from when you were in high school. Nor is it talking about your future. This flag is for your life today, wherever you are. If you’re 25 or 45 or 65, there is a way that seems like the way to go and you’re always looking right at it.
“There’s a way that seems right to a man . . . ”Are you pondering a decision, maybe even taken several steps in a certain direction, that justfeels like the right decision because it’s smooth and sunny and fun and fast? Make no mistake about it, most likely it is the wrong way.
Remember when Jonah ran from God? He went down to Joppa and found a boat waiting in the harbor that took him in the opposite direction from where God told him to go. It must be right; the boat was just waiting there for me. Satan can put a lot of wrong ways right in front of the person who is willing to consider them. You’ve got to go find the right way. The wrong way will usually come after you.
The problem is all of this only “seems right to a man ” because our minds are darkened by sin, our hearts are impatient for pleasure, and our wills are weighed down with the old nature and the inclination to sin. Don’t trust what seems right to you—that’s leaning on your own understanding. Proverbs 3:6 says, “In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.” Trust God with everything you’ve got, ask Him for wisdom, and He will make the path of your life plain and straight. He’ll make it so you don’t have to waste a lot of time going down roads that just seem right. He will lead you to a path you know is right in God’s eyes.
When I look back at choices I made, did I decide based on asking God for wisdom or what seemed right to me?
Prayer – Father, I know I need to trust You in everything. I also know that I go my own way more than I should. Help me to pursue Your will for me and even more than this, to pursue You with all I am. I know if I’m pursuing You, I’m on the right path. In Jesus’ name, Amen.