I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Psalm 32:8
One of the fascinating things about heaven will be to look back and see some rhyme and reason to circumstances which we thought made absolutely no sense at the time. There are times in life when you come to the crossroads, and which path you take dramatically affects the rest of your life. You stand there wondering which way to go. The outcome, at times, not only affects you as an individual but may even affect all history as well.
Take, for example, the time a mother, fearing that her baby boy would be slaughtered by the Egyptian soldiers, put her little baby in a pitch-covered basket at the edge of the River Nile. Had someone other than the daughter of Pharaoh happened by that morning, Moses’ life would have taken a completely different route or, perhaps, have been snuffed out entirely.
God stands at the crossroads, sovereignly directing traffic, when we think we are alone and abandoned. I couldn’t help thinking of that recently when I read Pearl Buck’s biography of Sun Yat-sen, known as the father of modern China, and uniquely venerated by both the Nationalists and the Communists.
When the Japanese invaded China in 1894, Sun Yat-sen became a revolutionary, intent on bringing Chinese government to China. Makes sense, right? It does to you, but it didn’t to the Japanese. So after an aborted attempt to throw out the Japanese, Sun Yat-sen fled for his life. His journey brought him to London. Ten days after his arrival, he was recognized on the street, and unwarily was enticed to visit the Chinese Legation, where he was imprisoned. The British, in cooperation with Peking, intended to send him back to China where he certainly would have been executed, and the Manchus in league with Japan would have stayed in power..
It looked like it was the end of the road for Sun. Only one man might help—an influential friend who believed in Sun—a Dr. Cantlie. But the challenge was how to get word to him. Sun tried to convince an interpreter to take a note to Cantlie. He was afraid. Sun appealed to a Chinese servant to get word to Cantlie. He also was afraid, but the servant told his wife, who courageously wrote a note, left it on the doorstep, and rang the bell.
Cantlie then knew why Sun had disappeared, but it was a formidable challenge. Nobody wanted to help or be involved, even though his detention by the Chinese was in violation of British law. Finally a newspaper carried a story and public opinion won out, leading to Sun Yat-sen’s release.
If this man had been executed, modern China as we know it today would not have the same face. When Sun Yat-sen came to the crossroads, it resulted in a nation’s taking a different path.
What happens to you as God’s child is not a matter of indifference with your Heavenly Father. When you get to the crossroads and you are uncertain which path to take, ask Him to guide you. I can assure you that whether God sends an angel as He did for Balaam, or quietly moves your heart to go one way, when you move the direction you think God would have you, He will direct your path.
God told the psalmist, “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you and watch over you” (Psalm 32:8). Then He gave a warning, “Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you” (v. 9).
Forget about footprints in the sand. Someday you will look back and see clearly the hand of God at places you least suspected it. Our hindsight from heaven will be perfect.
Resource reading: Exodus 2.