Stand at the crossroads and look; . . . ask where the good way is, and walk in it. Jeremiah 6:16
After days of illness and then spiking a high temperature, it was clear my husband needed emergency care. The hospital admitted him immediately. One day folded into the next. He improved, but not enough to be released. I faced the difficult choice to stay with my husband or fulfill an important work trip where many people and projects were involved. My husband assured me he’d be fine. But my heart was torn between him and my work.
God’s people needed His help at the crossroads of life’s decisions. Far too often, they hadn’t adhered to His revealed instructions. So Moses implored the people to “choose life” by following His commands (Deuteronomy 30:19). Later, the prophet Jeremiah offered words of direction to God’s wayward people, wooing them to follow His ways: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it” (Jeremiah 6:16). The ancient paths of Scripture and God’s past provision can direct us.
I imagined myself at a physical crossroads and applied Jeremiah’s template of wisdom. My husband needed me. So did my work. Just then, my supervisor called and encouraged me to remain home. I drew a breath and thanked God for His provision at the crossroads. God’s direction doesn’t always come so clearly, but it does come. When we stand at the crossroads, let’s make sure to look for Him.
Where do you need direction today? How might God be revealing Himself to you?
Dear God, when I’m uncertain, help me to stand at the crossroads and look for Your provision.
After God delivered the Israelites from Egypt, that generation (except for Caleb and Joshua) disqualified themselves from being permitted to enter the promised land because they failed to trust God (Deuteronomy 1:32-37). The book of Deuteronomy (the name comes from a Greek word meaning “second law”) addresses the younger generation about to enter the land. In it, Moses teaches them God’s law and stresses the importance of fully obeying it.
In chapter 30, Moses urged them to enter into a covenant, or binding commitment, to be wholly devoted to God (vv. 15-20). Through this covenant, the new generation would pledge anew their devotion to God and His law. In the ancient Near East, covenant ceremonies would typically include calling on deities as witness to the promises made. Since God is the only true God, in this covenant, His creation—heaven and earth—is called as a witness (v. 19).
Study Deuteronomy as God brings Israel to their crossroads.