“So you will walk in the way of good men, and keep to the path of the righteous.” Proverbs 2:20.
Every man must walk a path. Every man must walk a road. There is a journey to get through in this life, and you surely must travel it.
Sometimes we are put on a path by someone else’s decision, but we don’t have to remain on that path. Our remaining on a path is a personal choice.
Most men would not like to admit this. But it is true. How, you say? Well, think about this. Let your mind wander a bit, and think of all the conditions of your life right now, at this moment. The good, the bad. The horrific, the glorious.
Where are you, brother? Under what conditions are you living? Is your life hell? Is it closer to heaven? Or is it, as most would confess, a blend of both?
Now I want you to do something nakedly honest, bitterly honest. I want you to ask your inner man, that part of you which no one else can see, and that which cannot lie because the only being who can witness your answer is the person inside of you, and Almighty God. And you can lie to neither.
I want you to ask that man (you) what choices in your life brought about the conditions under which you now live. What decisions, be they ever so small or seemingly insignificant, led to your life today?
While it might be simple to come up with some lame excuses about things which happened out of your control, or events caused by the actions of someone else, the honest, hardcore truth, if you will face it, is this:
Your life is a result of the path you have chosen.
Now this little exercise might hurt our pride a bit. It may seem somewhat harsh. Negative. Less than up-lifting. But I will tell you a truth, a truth so real and so rare you will be astounded at the implications of it:
IF YOU WILL TAKE FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR CHOICES AND ADMIT YOUR LIFE IS A DIRECT RESULT OF THOSE CHOICES, YOU ARE ON THE PATH TO VICTORY ONLY ONE IN A THOUSAND MEN WILL EVER KNOW.
Most men want to run and hide under the multitude of excuses available to them. There is always someone, something to blame for our failures. But blaming others does not exonerate us from the results of our choices. It only serves to keep us from making important changes and healing thereby.
Are you addicted to anything? Do you lust? Do you drink alcohol? Do you smoke, do drugs, or anything which changes your mental state? Do you work incessantly, work out incessantly, entertain yourself incessantly, or habitually do anything instead of what you should be doing?
The fact is, we all do the above. Or some combination of it. Some less, some more. But the rebellious nature of man is to find other things to satisfy himself instead of the one thing which will satisfy. We do that which is easy, accessible, and convenient in the place of that which is honorable, right, and difficult.
So what is the one thing which will satisfy? Well, it is the one thing which has satisfied the few men who have found it, since the beginning of time.
It is righteousness.
Good men, satisfied men, fulfilled men, walk the path of the righteous, and don’t deter from it. It has always been this way, and it will always be this way. The nature of life does not change, as the nature of mankind does not change.
The harsh reality is that keeping to the path of the righteous is the only, only, only way to fulfillment and happiness! There is no replacement. Nor will there ever be.
All men who truly care about achieving fulfillment and joy will want to know how to find this path. And how to travel it and keep to it.
It’s a hard, difficult path. It’s a lonely path. Mostly uphill. You’ll be thought a fool by others if you take it. You won’t be applauded. You won’t be encouraged. But you will be challenged.
Are you still interested? Possibly not. Most men drop off right here. Opt for difficulty and loneliness over ease and pleasure? Why would anyone choose that?
Great men, the less than 1% of men, choose it because they have eyes to see the end result. Instead of looking merely 6 inches in front of their nose, chasing pleasure and ease and wandering blindly along, they are looking years down the road. They are looking to their end result.
A very wise man once wrote:
“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105
The secret key? It’s God’s Word, The Bible. It is here you will find this invaluable source of the path of the righteous.
But I’m not religious, you say. I have no interest in church, or following some organization’s rules.
That’s quite ok. Going to church is not the first step. That will come in time. The first step is always reading and contemplating God’s Word. Find out what God says about a higher purpose and meaning and the path to get there.
But just as the personal choices we make determine our path in life, it is our personal choice to seek God which will determine whether or not we find the path of the righteous.
We will walk a path. That path will be determined by our choices. If we truly want to live a victorious life, free from the vices which drag all men down to obscurity and failure, we will seek God, for it is He, and He alone, who can show us how to find – the path of the righteous.