On a recent family trip through Idaho our family stopped at “Three Island Crossing” at Glenns Ferry to see the trail ruts of the Oregon Trail that are still clearly visible. “Three Island Crossing” was one of the most dangerous and difficult crossings of the Snake River in Idaho. Knowing we were going to be going close to the area I wanted to stop and do some filming of the trail for a video illustration for a teaching I was about to do. It was amazing to see the trail all these years later and to imagine having had the courage to leave everything behind to start a new life in the Northwest, knowing that you would face so much danger and that you would be pioneering new territory that few had gone before you.
The premise of the teaching series was simple: your decisions determine your destination. And every decision we make puts us on a trail and the trail leads to a definitive destination. Those pioneers knew that the trail they decided to take would take them to Oregon. No one started out on the trail with the hope of ending up in Florida. Yet so many times in life people make a decision to get on a trail hoping it will lead them to fulfill their potential and reach their goals without knowing where the trail actually leads. Unfortunately after realizing you are headed in the wrong direction, many continue on hoping that somehow, someway they will end up in the right destination even though they are on the wrong trail.
The Proverbs writer wrote: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” (Proverbs 3:5-6) Did you see the amazing truth in those few verses? The trail you are on, the road you are taking, determines your destination. You may have started out with the best of intentions and all the hope in the world for success but if you are on the wrong trail none of that matters, you will always end up where the trail leads.
How To Know Which Trail To Take
The question you need to ask is how do you know which trail to take to live as the masterpiece God created you to be and live out the potential that is a part of your DNA. You may have taken a wrong road on a road trip and lost a few hours before you realized it and had to turn around or reroute, but in life if you are taking the wrong road/trail you could lose years and ultimately risk not fulfilling your potential and living as the masterpiece God created you to be. You risk living unfulfilled and frustrated when Jesus said that He came to give you a “rich, satisfying life”. (John 10:10 NLT)
Here are 3 bits of wisdom that will help you to make the right decisions today to make sure you are on, and stay on, the right trail – the right road – to reach your destiny.
1. Recognize Today’s Decision Affect Tomorrows Destination
As you make decisions recognize that every decision you make is a potential trail with a destination. Choose wisely lest you take the wrong road and end up at the wrong destination and never fulfilling your potential as a masterpiece.
2. When You See You Are On The Wrong Trail Don’t Continue
As a pastor I talk to a lot of people who want counseling to save their marriage. What I have noticed over the years is that most people don’t come to my office to get help until it’s too late. Their mate has moved out and filed for divorce. The right time to have started marriage counseling was years earlier when the problems started showing up – but they continued on the same trail hoping that somehow it would end with a different destination that they could see they were headed for.
If you are rafting a river and you know that there is a waterfall ahead, regardless of your intentions, your hopes or your beliefs, if you stay on the river at some point you will reach the point of no return and you will go over the waterfall. If you are on the wrong trail don’t continue.
3. Don’t Take The Same Trail Over And Over Hoping For A Different Destination
To keep doing the same things over and over and hope that you will end up at a different destination in life is like hiking on a trail and hoping that somehow that trail will lead to a different destination. We have a trail close to our home called 7 falls trail. Guess where that trail leads? You got it! And no matter how many times you hike it or where you were hoping it would lead you, when you hike the 7 falls trail you will always end up at 7 falls in the Catalina mountains.
Take a few moments and consider the trail you are on? Perhaps you know someone who has gone before you on this life trail – are you hoping for a different outcome? Are you connecting the dots between today’s decisions and tomorrow’s destiny? Are you on a trail you have taken before and again you’re sure it will lead somewhere different this time?
You have a destiny, you are full of potential, you are created to live life as a masterpiece so get on the right trail and getting on the right trail always begins with this:“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Let me know your questions, thoughts and comments below about “Your Decisions Determine Your Destination” and what you need to do today to make sure you are on the right trail. I would love to connect with you and help you reach your full potential and destination that you have as God’s masterpiece!