“When you come to the fork in the road, take it” refers to a 1998 quotation appearing in “The Yogi Book”. Berra declared that he employed the phrase while explaining how to reach his house to Joe Garagiola.
In 2009 the biography “Yogi Berra: Eternal Yankee” by Allen Barra was published, and it included a wonderfully appealing rationale for Berra’s famous remark. While traveling to Berra’s house one may choose the left fork or the right fork and both are acceptable decisions because both efficiently lead to his house.
Today, I invite you to think of this famous phrase a little differently. We are traveling down a path that most of us today have never taken. We are living out an existence in the middle of what globally has been referred to as a “pandemic.” We have all been affected. We may at this point, all know someone who has been tested positive for the virus, or perhaps suffered greatly, or died from the virus. It is real. It is dangerous. It is still quite unknown.
And that’s the scariest part. The unknown.
We’re being told we must stay in our homes to mitigate the effects of the virus and not overrun the hospital/medical system in our country. We’re being told we are to wear masks out in public, and only certain businesses may be open because they are “essential.” Yet, almost every public official when issuing these decrees is not wearing a mask. They are still receiving a paycheck. And while the models used to tell us how bad the virus is changes almost daily, the question becomes “how long?”
How long are we going to live under these guidelines (edicts from on high) before we can even attempt something that looks like “normal” life again? How long are we going to listen to the ones who seem to want only to keep us under their control, tell us what we can or cannot do, under penalty of law? From a purely spiritual perspective, maybe we should get a grip on three principles of the spiritual warfare side of what’s going on here.
First, it has always been Satan’s desire to destroy humankind. This is just the latest attempt in his efforts to breed fear, depression, and loss of purpose. Every day that goes by when people cannot return to normalcy, Satan smiles, laughs, and clutches tighter around our hearts and minds. The fear sets deeply, the depression paralyzes, and our sense of purpose is so blurred it becomes almost non-existent. So we have to ask, “Is this really what God wants from me during this time?”
Of course not.
Second, from Scripture we can find dozens of stories from highly celebrated and revered Bible heroes who have gone through similar testing by Satan. From Adam and Eve, to Abraham and Sarah, Moses, King David, and Elijah, just to name a few… all went through experiences where they had to choose to listen to God or listen to Satan. So this should encourage you by understanding you are not alone, and not the only one who feels this way today, or has ever felt this way.
What was God’s message? What has God said to mankind over and over and over, that might give us some perspective and hope today?
Third, God is consistent in His message to us.
Do not Fear.
I will never leave you or forsake you.
Here are God’s actual words to Joshua:
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go. – Joshua 1:9 NAS
Our purpose, the reason for our existence, is to bring God glory in all that we do.
Elijah found himself sitting under a bush in the wilderness because he had turned fearful, depressed, and had lost his sense of purpose. You can hear it in his own voice, when God asked him, “What are you doing here?”
“I’ve been working my heart out for the God-of-the-Angel-Armies,” said Elijah. “The people of Israel have abandoned your covenant, destroyed the places of worship, and murdered your prophets. I’m the only one left, and now they’re trying to kill me.” – 1 Kings 19:10 MSG
This looks and feels a lot like fear, depression, and lost sense of purpose to me. What about you?
In Elijah’s case, God points out that He will (not might, but will) use the prophet once again to appoint two new kings (one for Israel, one for Judah), as well as anoint the man God has chosen to replace Elijah when his work is completed. Basically, God says, get up and get busy. Put aside your fear, depression, and loss of purpose, and get back out there and do what I called you to do.
Look folks. Today, right this minute as you read these words, I believe God is calling us to get back out there and get busy doing what God has called us to do… bring Him glory.
Will we be able to go back to church right away? I doubt it. But can we make a difference in our world today, in this wacko-crazy Satan-influenced culture and society? Yes! How will we do it? What will enable us to get busy once again?
Just remember one thing, then three things.
One Thing: Jesus is LORD.
Three Things: Jesus in in Control, has sole authority, and will always be present with us!
So, when you come to the fork in the road today … or tomorrow … or one day soon … you must choose to listen to Satan or God’s Authoritative word… which will you choose?
Will you continue in fear, depression, and lost purpose?
Will you listen to God’s voice, calling you to get up, get busy, cast aside the fear and depression, and find a renewed purpose to bring God glory right where you are?
Your choice. Your’s alone. You choose.