Wednesday, November 17, 2010


The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
-Psalm 23:1-4
If you live on a college campus, you are probably pretty familiar with "chalking". I assume it is at most colleges, but perhaps not. Regardless, it is a very common practice at the University of Alabama. Students will use sidewalk chalk to advertise various student organizations and events around campus. (Wow, thats awesome, what's your point?) Don't worry, I'm about to tell you something awesome that happened to me. God physically left me a message in chalk.

To make this story make sense however, I must tell another awesome one. I have been called to do mission work in Thailand. I didn't know where Thailand was before two months ago. In my intro to religious studies class, we talked about Buddhism and I read about Thailand in my book. The name was burned in my mind and I couldn't stop thinking about it. I went to my college minister and told him about this odd and random desire to go there. He told me about an organization called Let's Start Talking that sends college students all over the world on summer mission trips and how he had been praying for God to bring people to our ministry with the desire to participate in this program. Coincidence? No. That's God. That's the Holy Spirit moving in our lives and in our ministry.

I went home and looked at the Let's Start Talking website and prayed earnestly about it. I asked God if this was something He wanted me to do and, more specifically, if it was a direction He wanted me to go with the rest of my life. I got out my Bible and prayed this simple prayer to God: "Lord, tell me if You want me to go do mission work in Thailand. Is this Your will for my life? Just answer me 'Yes' or 'No', please." And I did the random flip. It landed on the index. Sigh. Flip. The introduction to Acts (I have a study Bible with a few pages of introdution to each book with no scripture on them). Ugh. Flip. The introduction to Romans. With an exasperated moan I flipped once more, prepared to give up. My eyes landed on this:

But as surely as God is faithful, our message to you is not "Yes" and "No." For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by me and Silas and Timothy, was not "Yes" and "No," but in him it has always been "Yes."
-2 Corinthians 1:18-19

So ya, I'm going to Thailand. I'm not one to tell God "No" when He speaks to me like that. That occured on the night of September 9th, 2010. Now we started meeting within our college group with those interested in doing the LST trips. Nobody really seemed to agree upon where to go, and since you need teams of at least three, we didn't have any teams forming. So I made some compromise and decided that maybe this was God leading me other places before the final destination of Thailand, like He did with Paul. I started praying about other places and was in this contemplative and prayerful state of mind while I was walking to class five weeks ago (October 14th, 2010). I was staring at the sidewalk infront of me while walking and praying when suddenly I got stopped in my tracks. On the sidewalk was a simple message in chalk: the word "THAILAND" and an arrow above it pointing straight ahead. Now the problem with this was that, in the direction I was walking, I was walking the exact opposite direction of the arrow. (The message was upside down in this way when I stepped onto the square of sidewalk in which the message was written.) It hit me hard. I was praying about these other places and asking God where he wanted me to go this summer. He answered. Again, this is NOT coincidence. If you know the Holy Spirit, you recognize His handiwork.

I was walking the WRONG WAY! This frightened me! I don't want to be walking on any other path except the one that leads to God. Especially not one that is going in the exact opposite way of His will! Any path that does not lead to God leads to death! 

Now, I don't think the message was that if I went to do work in the Phillipines, or Malaysia, or Singapore, that I would be doing wrong. The message was that I was taking a different path from the one that God had already laid out for me. Now, just five weeks later, God has brought together a team of at least four that want to go to Thailand this summer. My prayers have been answered. He has provided. If I had just trusted in Him all along, I would never of had to worry about it. He had everything under control. God is good. God provides. His paths are in place, and His will is going to be accomplished in me. Of that I am certain.

Are YOU on God's path? The one He laid out for your life? He made one just for you. It leads to eternal life with him. If you aren't on His path, He will leave signs. Just like my chalk message.

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.
-Proverbs 3:5-6

If you trust in God and sincerely seek His path for your life, He WILL make the way clear. Maybe you have to make some changes, maybe you have to give some things up, maybe you have to give YOURSELF up. God will tell you if you ask Him. He will light the way if you trust in Him. Walk His path and the blessings will overflow in your life, and the reward will be an eternity with Him.

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