How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to Your word. – Psalm 119:9
Young men right now are in trouble. There are very few that are led by the Spirit. Plenty will say that they believe God exists, but very few make a real attempt to follow Him. I would go as far as to say that they believe that Jesus died for their sins, but they have no problem remaining in those sins. The reason, I believe, is that they do not have the Holy Spirit residing in them. I know it is a topic of debate whether we receive the Holy Spirit when we are saved. At least for me, I believe it was a separate event. When I first got saved as a young man, I had no real interest in living a Godly life, I just didn’t want to go to hell. When I wanted to really know God, I wanted the Holy Spirit. When I began to desire Him, I began to be obedient to His Word. Since learning to live by the Spirit, I haven’t longed for Egypt and wanted to return to a life without Him.
We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him. – Acts 5:32
I asked someone the other day, “We know God’s love is unconditional, but do you believe His Holy Spirit is as well?” We chewed on that one a couple of days. Then, I read that verse in Acts. It is quite clear; God only gives His Holy Spirit to those with a heart willing to obey Him. It is amazing the number of people on both sides of the Holy Spirit fence. There are those (mainly the young ones) who simply love their sin and would rather “believe in God” and think they will be okay in the end rather than learn to follow Him and His ways. Then there are older ones who have built up a set of rules that they think God wants them to live by. Anyone who lives outside their set of perceived rules is judged, and anyone who lives inside those rules is accepted. No religious group is more divided than the church. There are almost countless denominations. It is impossible for one person trying to walk out his or her faith to fit in to them all. They all have different looks and different expectations.
I say all that to say this: The path is the same, but everyone’s walk with the Lord looks different. If you read Pilgrim’s Progress, some of the things Christian had to deal with, Christiana didn’t have to deal with at all. They walked the same path to Celestial City, but different obstacles deterred them and kept them from moving forward at times. But the thing they had in common is the fact that they chose to go through the Wicket Gate and walk the path which led to Eternal Life.
Young man, you must choose to either walk the path of the Lord or walk your own path. Once you are on His path, it will seem so impossible and so difficult. But the Bible tells us how to keep our way pure. By guarding it according to the Word. You will never get stuck if, when faced with a decision having two distinct ways: Your way or His way, you choose His way. His way will fly in the face of sinful friends, and His way will often even fly in the face of religious church people. It is a difficult way . . . but it is how you keep your way pure.
Lord, I pray for young men today. I can count on one hand the number of students that I have taught that made an honest attempt at living for You. Most have no problem putting off spiritual growth until later. One even told me that he wants to be old and wise, but first he wants to be young and stupid. That young man is sitting in a prison cell. He didn’t have to be. So many are on the wide road that leads to destruction and they are so comfortable because so many are with them on the same path. There is some sort of comfort in surrounding yourself with likeminded people despite the fact you are all on the road to hell. Help the young men. Sweep through the land with Your Holy Spirit drawing them once more. Bind the evil that keeps their spiritual senses dull and saying “no” to You. Bring back old school conviction where you choose to either grab on to your seat and stay like you are or kneel before a Holy God and allow Him to power wash your soul. Please don’t let us watch our nation go to hell. Help a new generation guard their ways according to Thy Word. Amen