Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure.
— Proverbs 4:26
In 2008, pastor Andy Stanley wrote a book entitled The Principle of the Path In this book, he taught that there is a principle at work in each of our lives. The principle is simply this:
Direction, not intention, determines your destination.
Once you hear it, there is no way to forget it because it is obviously true in every area of our lives. It is a principle that is always at work. Always.
It is easy to identify this principle when we are driving. Even an obstinate person would readily admit that, if you want to get from Dallas to Austin, you need to travel south. Every reasonable person will agree that regardless of how well intentioned you are, how much you have prayed that God would make a way, or how desperately you want to get from Dallas to Austin by traveling north…..it won’t work. Why? Because direction, not intention determines your destination.
Sadly, it is more difficult to identify this principle at work in our lives when we are making decisions about our future. All too often, we follow our heart or do what feels right without seeking the counsel of God through his people or his word. When we go our own way, it often leads us to destinations that we never desired. Going the wrong direction in a car is easily fixed, but going the wrong direction in life? Well, that is often much more costly and much more difficult to redeem. If you set your feet on the wrong path, it could take decades to discover it, and there is no end to the damage that it can do.
I believe this is why God gave us so much wisdom in his word. I believe this is why God provides so much wisdom through his people. I believe God makes wisdom available to us because he wants us to set our feet on the right path in order to bring us to the exact right place he has for us.
As you go throughout this week, take some time to honestly evaluate where you are in your life. Ponder the path of your feet and ask yourself, “If I keep going this direction, where am I going to end up?” Stop looking for a quick fix or a simple solution and resolve before God to seek his wisdom. Then, allow him to change your direction. A change in direction is the only thing that will change your future. Why? Because direction, not intention, determines your destination.