I Met Jesus at the Crossroads
“I met Jesus at the crossroads,
Where the two ways meet.
Satan too was standing there, and he said come this way.
Lots and lots of pleasures I can give to you today.
But I said no! There’s Jesus here,
Just see what he offers me!
Down here my sins forgiven,
Up there a home in heaven,
Praise God that’s the way for me.”
As we go through life, each one of us will meet a crossroads. You can also think of a crossroad as an intersection. An intersection or a crossroad is where two roads or paths converge, and you need to decide which way to go. We must make a decision. We can go right, left, or straight ahead. And the way we choose, depends of course, on our destination.
At every crossroad or intersection, there is usually some kind of warning. Here where I live, in the city of Sacramento, we have stop signs. So when I arrive at an intersection in the road, there is a sign that tells me to “stop.” The idea is that once reaching the intersection, a person stops, looks both ways, and decides to go to the right, the left, or straight. We also have stoplights. If the light is red, it means stop; if it’s green, it means to go. The lights and stop signs are what we face in the physical world. Wherever we walk and come to an intersection, we need to decide which way to go.
But also in life, we are each coming to spiritual crossroads. We come to places or intersections where we have to decide which way to go. For example, as a young person, you have to decide if you want to do well in school or not. That’s a decision or a crossroad. You can decide, I’m not going to do my homework, I’m not going to study, I’m just going to go outside and play. That’s a decision that you can make. I don’t advise it, but it is a decision you could make. As you get older, you might decide whether or not you want to go to college. You come to that crossroads; what am I going to do when I go to college or go out and get a job and work? Even as you get older, then you have other decisions to make. You may find someone that you fall in love with and decide to marry, and this is another decision or crossroad. All of us, even an older person like myself, come to crossroads regularly, where we have to decide which way to go.
There are a few things we need to consider each time we come to a crossroads.
Step1. Choosing Faith Over Fear
“5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”
This proverb tells us to trust in the Lord. My challenge to you is each crossroad you face, go to the Lord—lean on the Lord. He promises that if we depend on God, He will help and direct our paths. God wants to be our guiding light or the person we follow when we come to the crossroads in our lives. We make decisions at the crossroads we meet every day. Some are major decisions, and some are minor. God wants to be part of your decisions at each of these crossroads that we face in life. Even down to the decisions such as who we have as our friends. Because our decisions and choices as to who we have as friends can affect our life, so as you face decisions in your life and come to a crossroads, go to God. Acknowledge God and ask for direction on which way to go or how to choose. This lesson is important, especially for young people to learn early in life. Because we have an enemy standing at each crossroads with us, trying to influence our decision toward the path that leads us away from God. But God calls each of us, saying, here, follow me, this is the way I want you to go.
I want to share with you a story about Jesus and His disciples found in the book of Mathew. This event happened after Jesus heard that John the Baptist, His dear friend, and cousin, was arrested. The Bible teaches us that Jesus withdrew himself to a place called Galilee. In Galilee is when Jesus began to preach, Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
“18 And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.
19 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Jesus was calling Peter and Andrew to follow Him. Peter and Andrew were at a decision-making point in their lives–at a critical crossroads that would shape both their futures forever. The two needed to decide what they would do. Let’s read verse 20 of Matthew chapter four to see what they chose.
“20 And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.”
Notice Andrew and Peter didn’t need to think about it. The Bible implies they left immediately; they straightway left their nets and followed Him. As the story continues, Jesus sees two other brothers, James and John, the sons of Zebedee. James and John were in a boat with their father when Jesus said, come and follow me. The Bible says that the two immediately left their ship and followed Jesus.
“21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.
22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.”
Today I want you to understand that Jesus is calling each of you to follow Him at the different crossroads (times for decisions) you have in your life. Jesus was telling them, I have something new or different for you to do. We see here; in the Bible, as Jesus called the men and said, follow me, each left what they were doing to follow Christ. So again, I want to proclaim that Jesus is calling each of you today to follow Him. Jesus has singled each of you out, and He is calling you each specifically, saying, follow me. So what are you doing at the crossroads of your life? Are you following Jesus? Sometimes at these crossroads, we find something is holding us back. One common thing holding people back is fear. But Jesus is calling us to serve Him and does not want us to allow the spirit of fear to affect our decisions.
“7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”
As a warrior for the Lord, I can go into the battle for Jesus and follow Him in every decision that I make, or I can retreat because I’m fearful. So I am telling you this from one warrior to another–retreating is not an option. God gives us the purpose to lift His name on high and glorify Him with our lives. When it’s time to make a decision and fear shows up, we must remember that fear is not of the Lord. Fear is of the enemy. So don’t make the mistake of choosing based upon fear.
Step 2. Inquiring of the Lord
Doing this next step will help us with fear. It is the most important thing we can do. When we come up against these decisions or crossroads, we need to inquire of the Lord. What do I do, Lord? What is my next step? We can read about men and women in the Bible that inquired of the Lord over and over again. Let’s look at King David, for example. God considered David as a man after God’s own heart. One thing that David did continually before going into battle is he “inquired of the Lord.” So when David comes to a crossroads or decision, what is he to do? He went to the Lord!
2 Samuel 5:19
“19 And David enquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I go up to the Philistines? wilt thou deliver them into mine hand? And the Lord said unto David, Go up: for I will doubtless deliver the Philistines into thine hand.”
Step 3. Waiting on God for the Answer at a Crossroad or Decision
So we find here that David had a decision, and he went to God for the answer. And we can read in the Bible throughout David’s life, again and again, where he went to God for answers and help. But most importantly, David waited for God’s guidance and answer before David moved forward. So we learned so far that first we need to choose faith over fear, second, we need to inquire of the Lord, and third, we need to wait on God for an answer.
This last step is also crucial; we should not move forward until we get an answer from God telling us which direction to go in while at the crossroads of decision.
“Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”
Sometimes during these times of decision making, we need to get into a quiet place so we can hear God’s direction for us.
“Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.”
As we go through life and make these decisions at these different crossroads we come against – we need to reach out to God. Reach out to God and ask Lord what would you have me to do here. Then instead of moving forward, wait until God shows you what to do. If you call on God and wait on Him for an answer as to what you should do, God will lead you in the direction that will draw you closer to Him in the decisions you make in your life.
Finally, if you do not know God today, Jesus is calling each of you to follow Him, just as he did Andrew, Peter, James, and John as He walked the shores of Galilee. But the decision is yours to make. You can follow Christ, or you can follow your way and Satan. Remember the song I sang to you in the beginning? The words say, “down here my sins are forgiven, and up there a home in heaven.” That’s the way we can go if we choose to serve God. Seek Jesus at the crossroads of your life, and He will be sure to direct you in His paths.