You, your family, and your friends have heard about this exciting new game. You go out, buy it, and have a wonderful, fun evening planned. Everyone’s together around the table, you open the box and lay out all the pieces – then someone asks the big question, “Who knows how to play?”
At this crucial moment, one of your friends might say, “let’s just start playing – we’ll make it up as we go.” Doing that, are you going to have an enjoyable night? Will you know the appropriate action to take at any given moment? Of course not. You might do what seems like a good thing and another player might declare it to be wrong or even accuse you of cheating. Who knows what’s correct? Who knows the right move?
Typically people opening a brand new game would take some time to read the directions from the person who invented the game in the first place. Reading the directions would stop all the questions on what to do and when to do it to play the game for the maximum amount of fun.
Most of us would agree that reading and following the manufacturer’s directions is the best way to play a game. We would also admit that trying to play with a person refusing to follow those instructions would ruin the game for everyone. Seems like a “no-brainer” … to correctly play the game, you follow the directions and you have to read the instructions in order to best follow those directions. Simple, right? Yet, so many of us try to play the game of life without ever reading the instructions.
God, as the great manufacturer, knows the best way to play the game and has given us wise instructions for living in such a way as to enjoy a life of grace and peace. He has even gone so far as to provide details on how to face any contingency in any situation we could ever face. This is a great definition of the Bible – God’s instruction book for the game of life. In its pages, God has revealed the details of His plan for our lives, what He expects, and all that He has in store for those who follow His instructions.
For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4
Spending time studying God’s Word and asking Him to instruct us in the correct ways of living through the “Game of Life” just makes sense.
Take hold of instruction; do not let go. Guard her, for she is your life. Proverbs 4:13
God even provides an expert in the game of life to help us with the instructions…
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you. John 14:26
God has gone out of His way to give us a fantastic set of directions in navigating the game of life with the maximum of blessings and the minimum of mistakes. But, many of us just don’t want to follow God’s instructions. With a simple board game, we follow directions scrupulously, but with the crucial game of life we balk. A great definition of sin is us playing by our own rules.
The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But a wise man is he who listens to counsel. Proverbs 12:15
… “How I have hated instruction! And my heart spurned reproof! Proverbs 5:12
He will die for lack of instruction, And in the greatness of his folly he will go astray. Proverbs 5:23
When it comes to slowing down your life and stopping to read the full instructions from God, do you balk? Are you spending time with God’s directions before you make your next move?
A poor yet wise lad is better than an old and foolish king who no longer knows how to receive instruction. Ecclesiastes 4:13
For this is a rebellious people, false sons, Sons who refuse to listen To the instruction of the Lord; Isaiah 30:9
Take a moment. Go get that Bible lying on your shelf. Ask Almighty God for His direction. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand. Even ask a more mature believer at church for help – he might have more experience following the instructions to the game.
Study the directions… don’t just read books about the directions… read the actual directions.
“Heed instruction and be wise, And do not neglect it. Proverbs 8:33
How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping it according to Your word. With all my heart I have sought You; Do not let me wander from Your commandments. Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You. Psalm 119:9–11
It’s your turn.
Think about it…