In my last post, I told you the true story of a crazy train collision caused by a guy wanting to make a few bucks and put on a show. Except things went wrong and people got hurt. All because no one had thought ahead to what could go wrong. (If you missed that post, check it out here.)
That collision is a lot like life. So often we end up in tough situations because we didn’t think ahead to what could go wrong.
Maybe you’re in a situation right now that you could have avoided. Maybe it’s happened from a text you sent, a look you gave, or a friend you made. What do you do to get off that track that’s bound to deliver you to a crash and onto the right one? Let me tell you how I did it.
When I was in high school, I happened to make some friends who weren’t the best. What they chose to talk about and the lives they chose to lead weren’t headed in a great direction. Slowly but surely I became like them. The way I behaved, the language I used, and the direction I began to go in life started to shift. One day I looked up and realized that I’d drifted off course. Instead of leading a productive lifestyle and loving people like Jesus, I was wandering aimlessly. If I could have looked down the tracks of my life, I’m sure I would have seen a train wreck coming.
The Lord woke me up to the fact that I needed to get my life back in order. What grace! Here are three ways I found helpful to get off the wrong track and onto the right one. These can help you too if you’re wondering how to get back on track (or how to avoid getting off the track if you’re already headed in the right direction!).
1. Guard your friendships.
This was major for me. If I had selected my friends more carefully in the first place, I bet I wouldn’t have had a problem with my language and behavior. Scripture clearly warns us to pay close attention to whom we spend our time with.
Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals” (1 Cor. 15:33).
Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm (Prov. 13:20).
I wish I would have paid attention to this wisdom sooner! You become like the people you surround yourself with, so be picky when it comes to close friends.
2. Keep the light on.
The time I spent in my Bible during the few years I had these friends was minimal. I still went to church and was the “good Christian guy,” but I was really just going through the motions.
In Psalm 119:105, we’re told that the Word “is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” The Bible is so much more than a book! It works like a superpowered flashlight, showing us which steps we should (and shouldn’t) take.
How much better would life had been if I would have invested more time in reading the Bible? I can’t go back and change it, but I can invest time in my relationship with Jesus now. So can you.
3. Listen to your gut.
If you feel uneasy or uncomfortable about something, listen! I could have stayed out of so much trouble if I had just listened to my conscience.
Have you looked up recently and realized that you’re wandering off the path you want to travel? Is your conscience telling you to be careful of something or someone? If you have taken the wrong path, it’s not too late to turn around. You’ll never regret shifting toward the right one.
What’s been your greatest obstacle to staying on or getting back on the right path? I’d love to hear, and I know other readers would, too.