Whether you’re a new Christian or a seasoned follower of Christ, it can be difficult to understand what God is calling you to do. It’s the repetitive question that humanity asks, “why am I here?” The answer lies in the path that God’s has designed for your life. When we stay on God’s path for our life, we fulfill our calling and live out the best version of ourselves.
So how do you stay on God’s path? Here are 5 principles that you can start applying today on how to recognize and follow God’s path for your life.
How to Stay on God’s Path for Your Life
Principle #1: Recognizing God’s Path in Your Life
As a Christian, you are a part of the body of Christ. As with any body, there are many parts with different functions and abilities. That means that each of us plays an essential role in the kingdom of God. Knowing that we all have a purpose in God’s kingdom, means that we all will have certain strengths. This is by divine design. Romans 12:6 (NLV) says,
“In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you.”
To identify your path, start by identifying the strengths that God has given to you. Is it teaching, writing, singing, cooking, are you the friend who can listen without interruption, the person who sends the thoughtful card right on time? The possibilities are endless! We all have been given talents. You can identify yours by honing in on what comes easily and is enjoyable to you. Find your gift to find your path!
Principle #2: Run Your Own Race
When you find your path, your purpose, it’s important to stay focused on your progress. This means not getting distracted by what others are doing. Hebrews 12:1 (NLV) says,
“All these many people who have had faith in God are around us like a cloud. Let us put every thing out of our lives that keeps us from doing what we should. Let us keep running in the race that God has planned for us.”
The first sentence is referring to the previous chapter Hebrews 11. If you haven’t, read that here. This chapter highlights the various people from the bible to remained faithful to the path that God had for their lives. In doing so, they brought glory to God and contributed greatly to his kingdom – just as we want to do!
The second part of the scripture says to throw off things that keep us from running the race that God has planned for us. This would include things like sin, procrastination, distractions, and comparison. When we are not focused on the race that God has for called us, we risk not being effective. Straying from God’s path in our life will lead to a deepening void and an unsettled spirit. Study more about this important point, check out this resource:
Principle #3: Your Path Narrows as You Refine Your Faith
I’m a terrible bowler. Always have been and I have no desire to try and improve. I’m okay with being the entertainment! However, I’m always so impressed watching other bowlers refine their skill. They start with both gutters covered with giant bumpers that allow them to bounce off of the full width of the lane until the ball makes it’s wondering way to the pins. As skill level improves and aim is refined, the bumpers are removed, as they’re no longer needed. With continued practice, aim can be directed with great precision at a single pin, with the ball traveling on the narrowest path possible. Just amazing!
As an early Christian, it’s a lot like functioning as a beginner bowler. We wander down this large path and messily bounce around with little aim or purpose. At that point, we’re just thankful we made it onto the path! As time passes, the Lord continues to work on our heart. We start to reshape our thoughts and behaviors. With each revision of ourselves, our faith is strengthened. What we find is, as our faith grows, our path narrows. This is okay. This means, the things we used to be okay with, we no longer allow space for in our lives. This could include habits, sins, relationships, thoughts, etc. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says,
“This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!”
Principle #4: Obedience While Staying on God’s Path
Many times throughout the bible, God calls his people into action. However, these commands rarely come with details. Most are incredibly vague. When Jesus called his disciples, Peter and Andrew, he said, “Come, follow me (Matthew 4:19).” It was a vague calling, as no details were given, but direct none the less. If we listen, God will tell us our next steps. There may not always be detail, but that is where our faith kicks in. Our faith is the bridge between what we see in the natural and what we feel God calling us to do.
When we made our recent home purchase, it was a complete journey of faith. It was a major upgrade in size, location and opportunity, but it also came with a larger mortgage and a ton of work. We felt called down this path, even though what we saw in the natural was very intimidating. We continuously prayed Proverbs 3:5-6,
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”
That’s what we did. We prayed daily that if this was the right move, that God would make our paths straight. He did. Our old home sold within 24 hours, moving days/times lined up flawlessly, inspections were great, and so on.
We continue this prayer daily, as we have seen the fruit that comes from staying on God’s path.
Principle #5: Trusting God’s Path
We know God’s path is best for us, but God’s path doesn’t always come easy. When details are left out, when what we see in the natural doesn’t make sense or align with where we think we’re supposed to go, and (what I think is the worst!) when God doesn’t deliver on your timeline (ha!) – discouragement comes quickly.
For those who are unsure of what the future holds or what next steps to pursue, God’s truths will speak to your situation and restore your hope and will set you on the path to pursuing the best version for your life. Here are 7 biblical truths to restore your hope and pursue what God has for you.
Also, many of us delay or refuse the promises that God has for us simply because we choose fear over faith. The view that we see in the natural scares us out of investing what’s needed into the spiritual. Here is how to not give up on your dream!
Lastly, it’s frustrating enough when the drive through isn’t moving as quickly as you’d like, but when waiting on God to move, the waiting can be unbearable. If you’re in a position where you’re waiting on God, here are 5 ways to be more productive during your wait.