At the fork in the road…take it (Part 1)

There are times in our lives when we face difficult decisions. Often, there is no clear evidence that one way is good, while the other is bad. It’s normal that each path has its share of pros and cons, especially from the limited view and perspective we have at the moment.

Just over two years ago, I faced a significant fork in the road in my own life. The decision to stay in San Jose, or to move to a new area. I loved San Jose. I was very involved and firmly planted in my church. I had wonderful friends. I had a good job. As a sports fan, I was anywhere from a few minutes from the arena to see the Sharks, to 45 minutes to the ballpark to see the Giants. But at the same time, there was something within me that was unsettled.

I know what you’re thinking, but I don’t eat sushi.

I was presented with a situation that would mean me relocating to Rocklin, about 140 miles from San Jose. The situation wasn’t something that was once-in-a-lifetime or anything. It was actually nothing that significant at face value. But I could see that the ripple effect from going down that road would be life-changing. Eventually, I stood at the place where my next step would have to be a commitment to one way or the other.

When looking at the fork in the road, it’s impossible to determine that one is the correct road, and all other options are wrong. It’s frustrating. It’s frightening. It’s overwhelming. In my case, I prayed and prayed. I thought and thought. But when it came down to making a decision, I considered one simple, inescapable factor.

Which path will require more faith?

That was it. All other questions made each path seem completely equal. That was the only question in which I could see a clear distinction. I knew that moving to a new city, going to a new church, getting a new job, and all the other starting-over elements were going to require me to reach a new level of faith. A level I had never faced before. I knew neither path would be wrong, but I was certain that taking the road to Rocklin would require of me a level of faith and spiritual maturity that you can only reach in sacrifice. I would have to sacrifice the familiar and comfortable nest I had built over a decade’s time, for the great unknown.

The path has not been an easy one, but it’s one I have never regretted.

If you’re not currently facing a fork in the road, you will. If it is not clear to you which is the path to take, don’t flip a coin or refer to the Magic 8 ball. Ask for wisdom. Consider which path will require the most faith. That doesn’t mean do something stupid or that puts you in danger. It means consider the path that will require you to trust in, and rely on God in a way that makes you uncomfortable to think about.

If you know someone who is in this situation right now, support them. Advise them. Pray with, and for them. You cannot make the decision for them. Sometimes you may have a better view of the situation than they do. Be the voice of wisdom. Ask the question. What will bring you to a higher level of faith?

Once the decision is made, then what?

I’ll tell you Monday.

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