Light Road vs Dark Road

Last night during
our Life Group meeting, I felt the Lord leading to ask the question:  Can
you remember a time when you were faced with a situation that forced a choice?  Will I become bitter over this situation or
will I become better?

 He showed me the two roads, a dark road and a
light road.  As in our natural roads,
these roads all lead somewhere.  When a
devastating diagnosis or sudden death shakes us to our core…we can quickly go
to the dark side.  The dark road entices
us because it appeals to our feelings. 
It seems to lead to a place where we can give expression to rants of
anger or self-pity.  We can indulge our
emotions and think about every “if only” or “why me” question.  These are definite forks where we must choose
to go dark or light.  The light road is
the godly road.  It is a road that at
times takes greater courage to trust and obey God’s plan than our own.  We must choose:  Will we trust our God or will we succumb to
the lies of our enemy?

 

We all face these types
of forks in the road.  Not all forks come
with dramatic circumstances.  Sometimes
they show up in our quiet reflection. 
Little thoughts about how someone treated or didn’t treat us fairly can
move our thoughts down one road or another. 
Perhaps it may be job related, why did they receive a promotion and I
didn’t.  The focus is on you.  Our flesh rises up and declares “life is
unfair to me!”  Whine, complain, mumble
and grumble becomes the song of our hearts. 
When that happens it is clear the dark path that leads to bitterness has
sucked us in. Many dark paths are chosen because comparisons arise due to
jealousy, insecurity or the same reaction such as the older brother had in
Jesus story.   Jesus shared this, story
known as the prodigal son.  This younger brother asked for his father's
inheritance, squandered it and came home repentant.  The overjoyed father
splurged on a party in celebration for his son who was lost was now home!
Unfortunately the elder brother was not as excited and showed forth the
"what about me" attitude?  You know that one where it is all
about me.  Dad didn't give me a party, it’s not fair.  The dark side.  Paul and Silas choosing to sing praises when
in prison is an example of the light road.

His father tried to help
adjust his attitude by saying all I have is yours, you could have had a party
as well anytime.  We don't know if the elder brother and the prodigal
became close again.  It really all depended on whether or not the attitude
adjustment was made.  Elder brother could have said, you are right dad and
chose the road of light, or he could have held on to his resentment and gone
down that bitter dark road.  It really was his choice.  The same is
true for each of us. Will we stay on the dark path, or choose the light?

 

 

The light path leads us
toward God and His ways, first in our souls, and then it affects our outward
life.  We enter this path through trust
and obedience.    One of the ways to practice choosing the
light road is by developing a grateful, thankful heart.  As parents I believe we need to help our
children learn to be grateful and thankful.  But, it starts with us.
Siri defines gratitude as the quality of being thankful; readiness to
show appreciation for and to return kindness.  It is an action verb of the
heart.  If we walk with a grateful heart toward the Lord and others, we
develop a pattern of walking toward the Light.  There is a cleansing
feeling that accompanies gratitude.  I asked Siri to define
"thankful".  Her response: pleased and relieved or expressing
gratitude and relief.  When we acknowledge and express thankfulness we are
expressing to our soul that God and at least one other person in this world is
good.  It should be enough to know God is always worthy of our thanks, but
many times our eyes are blinded by selfishness and self-absorption so we cannot
see His goodness in our situation   that is being manifested all around us.

 

Colossians 3: 15 -
17instructs us to:  Let the message
about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives.  Teach and counsel
each other with all the wisdom he gives.  Sing psalms and hymns and
spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.  And whatever you do or say,
do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God
the Father.

 

Developing a thankful
heart takes time.  Learning to be thankful for small things help us choose
the Light Road when our emotions would scream go dark, go dark.  I am so
thankful for His mercy when we go dark, that His spirit leads back to the
light.  The dark path narrows our vision to focus on the negatives in the world;
the light path opens us up to see possibilities and hope.  

 

Father I ask that you
help us choose the light path.  I thank you for revealing anywhere we may
have even briefly chosen the dark path and lead us to your Light.  In
Jesus Name, Amen