Think about the advice we hear, read, and maybe even share: Be true to yourself. Follow your dreams. Have faith in yourself. Stuff like this. Y’know, basically everything that you find in the self-help section of Barnes & Noble, and Star Wars. Emily and I listened to a video where a ministry asked Jim Carrey to speak to attendees at an event, and his encouragement was much the same.[1. With some added “we are all God, God is in all of us” for good measure.] It’s the kind of advice that leaves us choosing our own paths, serving as our own guides toward our spiritual destinies.
The problem, of course, is when left to our own devices, we have no idea where we’re going. And this just won’t do, as Charles Spurgeon reminded his readers in Advice for Seekers. He wrote,
Too many say, “I am my own guide, I shall make doctrines for myself, and I shall shift them and shape them according to my own devices.” This is death to the spirit. To be abreast of the times is to be an enemy to God. The way of life is to believe what God has taught, especially to believe in him whom God has set forth to be a propitiation for sin; for that is making God to be everything and ourselves nothing. Resting on an infallible revelation and trusting in an omnipotent Redeemer, we have rest and peace; but on the other unsettled principle we become wandering stars, for whom is appointed the blackness of darkness forever. By faith the soul can live; in all other ways we have a name to live and are dead. (37)
Friends, none of us need to be our own guides, anymore than we need to follow blind ones. The way is before us. God has shown it to us, the way of life. The gospel. Let’s keep following it, and pointing others to it.