The last week, as I prepared to share in my life Thin Within group on chapters 28-30 in the Thin Within book, I looked at my lesson notes from the last session I taught. Boy, God did it again! He used those notes to really encourage ME! But beyond that, there are things that he showed me on the pages of the book, Thin Within, and in His Word…again…His Word really IS living and active…I want to share this with you.

This is what the LORD says:
“Stand at the crossroads and look;
ask for the ancient paths,
ask where the good way is,
and walk in it,
and you will find rest for your souls.
But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.’
~ Jeremiah 6:16

With all the words that it is so easy for me to spout off and all the messages and voices that are crying in this world to be heard, when I read this verse *this* time, I felt something…it penetrated my heart.
Questions for you that God asked me…I hope they lead you along a joyful time in His Word.

1.) WHO speaks these words? Journal what it means to you that the God of the universe, the One who spun the universe into existence, who called, by His Word, everything into being…that HE has something to say to YOU.

2.) What do you believe about His character? Can you support this in scripture? If you think that the one speaking in Jeremiah 6:16 is an ogre, a “boss” that you have to impress with your “goodness,” or a disapproving, crotchety Father, then that will affect how you see *what* he says in these verses. If, however, you see Him accurately, as he IS, you will be more likely to have a correct perception of his intentions and desires for you, His precious child.

3.) Are you familiar with the designation in many translations of the bible when the word, “Lord” is in all capital letters? When you see “LORD” as opposed to “Lord?” Traditionally, when you see LORD in all capital letters, it is when there were four letters there, known as the tetragrammaton. It is the Name that God used to reveal himself to Moses. It is often translated “I AM” as well. In John 8, Jesus told those listening, “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was born, I AM.” Journal what it means to you that I AM speaks living words to you in this moment. Can you still your mind and heart and know that He is God? That He is I AM? When all questions are asked in our lives, He is the I AM…the answer…

“Stand at the crossroads and look…”

4.) When you “stand” what are you NOT doing? What must you do (with forward movement) in order to be able to STAND? Is your life characterized by GO GO GO? How might it change if you stopped…and stood…

5.) Where do we stop and stand?

6.) What is implied by the idea of “crossroads?”

When we have a “crossroads” in our lives, we have a choice. In any given moment, we have a choice as to who will own the moment. Flesh? Or the Spirit? God? Or self?

7.) In your stopping, according to this passage, what are you to do? Stop and _________.

The great I AM speaks…He gently admonishes. “Child…it is ME…I AM speaking to your heart. Deep calls to deep! STOP your frenzied pace for a moment. Stop…stand….be still…and now…look. The choices are before you. Which will you pick?”

“…ask for the ancient paths,
ask where the good way is…”

8.) What verb is mentioned twice in this part of the verse?

9.) If one “asks,” what does that imply about their knowledge? About their need?

10.) Who is the One we are to ask? (implied at the beginning of the passage…)

11.) Prideful, humble. Which of these two attitudes accompanies the ability to “ask where the good way is?”

As we choose to stop, stand, look at the choices before us, ask God what HIS way is, we are choosing a heart of humility. In that moment, we are taking captive our willful stubbornness, our rebellion. We are offering ourselves to Him…to ask Him, to hear Him…and then…

“…and walk in it…”

12.) Once we have stopped, stood, looked, evaluated, asked…this part of the verse implies God WILL answer. He won’t hang us out to dry! What are we to do then?

Re-read the verse putting emphasis on the word “IT”…

This is what the LORD says:
“Stand at the crossroads and look;
ask for the ancient paths,
ask where the good way is, and walk in IT

13.) Once we have stopped, stood, looked, asked, and heard from God about which way at our crossroads we are to go, what are we to do?

14.) How would your life change if you took a single moment captive for the Lord and did what this verse teaches? What if you took another moment captive for the Lord and did what this verse teaches? And another? And another?

A godly life is comprised of a godly choice in a moment, connected to another godly choice in a moment…those moments are opportunities where we have stopped, stood, looked, asked, and heard God say “This is the way…walk in IT” and done it in that moment. Try not to think about an entire LIFE of godly choices…that is next to impossible to fathom and will put us on tilt. Don’t think about losing 56 pounds or 120 pounds or 15 pounds. Think about THIS MOMENT. Can you do something with THIS moment? You can. You know you can. Now this one? See there? You have already captured a bunch of moments for the Lord just by hanging out at this blog! 🙂

“…and you will find rest for your souls.”

15.) List all the things you are to do from all of Jeremiah 6:16.

16.) What will GOD do in this passage? (There are at least two…they may be implied…do you see them?)

God will answer if we ask. But he will also give REST to our SOULS IF we walk in His way.

17.) What does “rest for your soul” feel like, sound like, LIVE like to you?

18.) Can you stop, stand, look, ask and walk in His way for a moment? If so, what are you promised?

19.) Respond to this material. Journal a prayer or sing a praise to God!

But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.

20.) What is another choice a person can make?

A related passage is found in Isaiah 48:17-18:

This is what the LORD says—
your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:
“I am the LORD your God,
who teaches you what is best for you,
who directs you in the way you should go.
If only you had paid attention to my commands,
your peace would have been like a river,
your righteousness like the waves of the sea.

21.) IF only what?

22.) Then what?

Surrendering to God’s authority, submitting to Him…brings peace…the visual images used in this passage are of a never-ending river and ever-rolling waves of the sea…your peace would be never-ending and your righteousness steady forevermore IF…IF… (Note, too, who it is that is speaking here in this passage, too…again, it is the LORD, the “I AM…”)

Look up Matthew 11:28-30 in your bible or here. The Thin Within book points out that we can experience the rest Christ promises in the midst of our busy lives by:

1.) Coming to Him when he calls.

2.) By admitting we are weary and burdened.

3.) By bowing our heads and willingly placing our burdens in His yoke.

4.) By learning from Him.

–> Which of these four things are hardest for you?

Let’s cease striving. Let’s stop trying to do this in our own strength. Let’s take THIS moment captive for the Lord. The next moment we will worry about…well…in the next moment!

He calls, He beckons, He draws you close, further still, deeper yet…will you come?
Journal a prayer of commitment about how you will allow these truths move you to action today. What will you do in response to Jeremiah 6:16, in response to God’s voice?