All of us, at one time or another, have asked ourselves a similar question. Wrestling with decisions, trying to make the right one, not sure of which path to take, wondering if we go this way, will it all blow up in our face? Ever been there? I’m sure you have. There is so much uncertainty in this life, and sometimes we find ourselves reaping painful consequences even when we thought we were doing the right thing or making the best decision. “Should I stay or should I go?” is just one of many ways to phrase the question that all of us has wrestled with on countless occasions.
Just this past week, I’ve found myself on the pages of the book of Ruth. I’ve studied this book before. I’ve taken a deep look at her life before. Still, there is a never-ending well of refreshment that comes from opening up God’s Word, and it is life-giving and new every time I venture into it. The opening scene of the book of Ruth doesn’t even spotlight her, but rather the family that she would marry into. They had left a land plagued by famine to pursue a land that although might have provided more food for them, it was a land that was strictly off limits for God’s people. They, too, were faced with the nagging question, “Should I stay or should I go?” Going made perfect sense to their finite minds. They had no food where they were, so they went to a place that did in hopes of survival. Makes sense, right? Funny how our rational, understanding, and common sense is most often not God’s though, isn’t it? Consequence would befall this family for walking outside of the parameters that God had set for them. Still, our question remains:
Should I stay or should I go?
I’d like to offer you some biblical guidelines for decision making today tucked into the beginning verses of Psalm 37. Would you go there with me?
“Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.” Psalm 37:3
The primary principle and application that we can take away from this one verse is to remain where God has planted you. “Dwell in the land” that God has put you, and while you’re there, be well-acquainted with faithfulness. While you’re there, fill your days with doing good. Would others describe you as a faithful person? Instead of always looking over there where it appears to be much more appealing, be fully where God has you today. Immerse yourself in today, in the places that God has put you, and be faithful there.
“Delight yourself in the LORD, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
If God’s Word no longer thrills you, you might have a hard heart. To delight yourself in the LORD means to love His Word and time spent in it. A hard heart is prime soil for disobedience, and the more time spent away from God’s Word and His presence, the harder the heart becomes. Sin (choosing my way over God’s way) becomes increasingly easier the harder the heart becomes. Delighting in God’s Word is the remedy for your heart and will culminate in a clear path.
“Commit your way to the LORD; trust in Him, and He will act.” Psalm 37:5
The one question I will pose to you today as you ponder your current circumstances and what to do about them is this: “Have you prayed about it?” If you haven’t done that, no wonder you feel stuck. If you haven’t first committed your way to the LORD and what HE wants for you, no wonder you feel confused. This vital step must not be overlooked, but tragically, it so often is. And worrying about it is NOT praying about it. Get on your knees, commit it to the LORD, surrender your wants and desires, and leave it at His feet. Let Him lead your life.
I dare you to start living your life with these 3 short verses in clear view. Blessing always follows obedience.