Having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints. Ephesians 1:18 ESV
It can be hazardous to drive through a thick fog at a normal speed. Many accidents occur because many drivers fail to slow down to allow more time to react if traffic stops or other hazards appear. Even the most skilled drivers use extreme care and alertness when driving in a fog. Fog-related accidents cause more than 500 fatalities each year.
As I drove through the fog this morning on my way from the gym, the Lord reminded me that the Christian journey is tantamount to driving in a fog. We often cannot see our way ahead clearly and have to rely on the Holy Spirit to guide us to our destination. Even seasoned believers can lose their way and get caught up in the messes of life when they struggle to see what God is doing and how God is leading them. Fortunately, the Bible provides sound principles for believers to navigate through their existential and spiritual fog.
The first principle is to take advantage of the Holy Spirit. Driving experts say drivers should take advantage of their windshield wipers and defrosters when driving in a fog. The Holy Spirit is our windshield wiper and defroster. He wipes away the darkness, despair, and faithlessness so we can continue our Christian journey with hope, faith, and perseverance. When our spiritual hearts become frozen with sin and the cares of this world, the Holy Spirit defrost our hearts so we can be sensitized to the voice of God and do the will of God. The Holy Spirit reminds us to turn on our spiritual lights so the Christ in us can be made visible for all to see.
The second principle is to resist the urge to use worldly approaches to deal with our existential/spiritual fog. Because we are spiritual beings, everything we go through has a spiritual component. The mistakes many Christians make is to rely on other people’s recommendation or methods instead of trusting God to bring them through their fog. Driving experts warns us not to use the lights of any vehicles in front of us as a guide when driving through a fog. Doing so can actually cause us to become too focus on one thing and miss other hazards on the road.
We have to resist the urge to focus on one thing while ignoring the hazards that are all around us. For example, it is not wise to focus solely on money in times of financial hardships. Many marriages failed not because of money problems, but because the couple stops investing in the marriage spiritually and emotionally. It takes more than money to have a good marriage. Wealthy people get divorced as much as the poor and working class.
The third principle is to avoid feeding our souls with the world’s diet. The world’s diet (greed, consumerism, love of pleasure, envy, and jealousy) starves the soul of believers and makes us spiritually deficient. The right diet for the Christian soul is the bread of life (the word of God), prayer, and worship of Almighty God. These are the spiritual practices that help us journey through our existential and spiritual fog without losing our trust in God.
Lastly, driving experts state that when driving through a fog we have to leave plenty of distance between our car and the one in front of us. In the same way, we have to leave plenty of distance between our lives and the people around us. In 1 John 2:15-17, we read,
“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world.” The way we deal with our fog should not be the way the people in the world do. Our faithfulness to God should be visible even in a fog. Our testimony is strengthened through our tests. As we trust God to help us navigate through our fog we have to live in such a way among unbelieving neighbors, so that even when they speak against us as evildoers, they may see our good deeds and glorify God.
Prayer- Blessed Lord, please help the brothers and sisters who struggle to keep the faith as they navigate through their fog.