My son, if sinners entice you, do not consent. If they say, “Come with us, let us lie in wait for blood; let us ambush the innocent without reason; like Sheol let us swallow them alive, and whole, like those who go down to the pit; we shall find all precious goods, we shall fill our houses with plunder; throw in your lot among us; we will all have one purse”– my son, do not walk in the way with them; hold back your foot from their paths [Proverbs 1:10-15]
Life is a challenge. I would go as far to say that life is one long test. Things go well, things don’t go so well. Good days and other days.
I have made big mistakes which have had little or no impact on me, while other smaller, daft ones, have had the potential to cause major consequences. You just don’t know sometimes.
The challenge then becomes about protect yourself. To protect your future. To protect the God-given future. It doesn’t mean doing nothing and taking no risks. Verses like these in Proverbs have helped me to create some non-negotiables for how I travel, make decisions and walk with God through life.
Do not consent. Stay strong. Learn to say NO. There are some things which I should just not agree to.
Be alert to ambush. Keep an eye out for what’s going on around you. Call them boundaries, guardrails, whatever. Put them in place, they will keep you from getting caught out.
Stay away from the place of danger. Don’t go to those places where temptation may be too strong. It’s too easy to justify our behaviour sometimes but ultimately it only hurts us.
The crowd is not always right. This may be the message of the world but we are not meant to just go with the way of the world. It doesn’t matter everyone else is doing it or even that society says it’s ok. Do what is right because it is the right thing to do.
Hold back when appropriate. Take a moment. Look. Really look. Fools do rush in. It can be difficult but learn to wait for Gods lead.
All with the power of the Holy Spirit helping you too. This is the adventure of leading well in life. Go for it!
Would you add anything else to the list of non-negotiables?