During a course in "conversational" Spanish,
our teacher gave us some popular phrases.
Among them is one that really stuck in my
mind. When parting from a friend, say,
"Vaya con Dios," translated is "go with
God." We are more apt to say, "May God
go with you," but wouldn't it be much
better to say, "May you go with God"?
We might go where God would not want to go
with us, but if we "go with God" we will
always go the right way.
One of the most difficult tasks we have is
to move with God. We have our agenda,
complete with details; and we offer it to
God for His approval. That is the exact
opposite of the desired procedure. It is
not usually the case that God’s agenda is
the same as ours, unless we have checked
with Him first and made His agenda our own.
We don’t usually do that.
God has “traffic signals and signs” that He
wants us to obey. Sometimes He says, “Go.”
Other times He says “Wait” or even “Stop.”
What He desires is instant obedience to the
signal He is sending. In vehicular traffic,
it is vitally important that we observe the
stop-s and go-s and use the caution-s to be
alert to a change. Not obeying these
directions can be disastrous, for us and
“Because of his strength will I wait upon
thee: for God is my defense.” (Psalm 59:9).
That is an excellent reason to wait upon
God—because of His strength. His strength
works in and through us when we wait and
walk with Him. “I wait for the Lord…”
(Psalm 130:5). We can predetermine to wait
upon God and make that decision each time we
become impatient and become tempted to run a
stop sign He has posted.
“To every thing there is a season, and a
time to every purpose under the heaven.”
The Psalmist said in Psalm 119:33-35 “Teach
me, O Lord, the way of thy statues…Give me
understanding…Make me to go in the path of
thy commandments…” If we could hear the cry
of God’s heart toward us, it would echo
those words. He wants us to come to Him
to be taught, given understanding and
direction for right living. How pleased He
would be if we always adhered to that
standard and prayed “Shew me thy ways, O
Lord; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy
truth and teach me…” (Psalm 25:4-5) and
concluded the prayer with I will “Rest in
the Lord and wait patiently for him.”
Our problem is that we want to run our own
lives. We are not bold enough to say
that we know better than God what is best
for us, but our very actions indicate that
we trust our judgment better than we do His.
Isaiah 52:12 admonishes “For ye shall not go
out with haste, nor go by flight: for the
Lord will go before you; and the God of
Israel will be your rereward.” If we
travel with God, He will go before us to
lead and follow us to protect our back.
We can usually tell if the motion promptings
are from God or Satan. Satan will urge
us to “go out with haste” and ignore the
traffic signs, while God gently leads and
encourages us to follow. If we need
further advice about waiting, we can find it
in Isaiah 45:2 “I will go before thee, and
make the crooked places straight…” God
cannot go before us if we don’t wait for
Him. If we are unable to wait, then
the reverse would be true: The places
that would have been straight will be
crooked and the way hard to find. But
“…blessed are all they that wait for him.”
“But they that wait upon the Lord shall
renew their strength; they shall mount up
with wings as eagles; they shall run, and
not be weary; and they shall walk, and not
That is a great motivation to observe God’s
stop (wait) signs.
Israel waited at the Red Sea thinking surely
their time had come to be recaptured by the
Egyptians. Moses had had a lot of
experience waiting. He spent forty years in
the backside of the desert after killing the
Egyptian and fleeing Egypt. In Midian he
had heard from God at the burning bush and
was still listening at the seaside. He told
the anxious people, “Fear ye not, stand
still, and see the salvation of the
Lord….the Lord shall fight for you…” (Exodus
14:13-14). God’s visible presence guided
these wandering Israelites in the form of a
cloud by day and a fire by night. When the
cloud stopped, they waited. They did not
continue their journey until the cloud moved
again. If they had not waited, they would
not have known the best way to travel toward
the Promise Land. Many enemies would have
been lurking in wait to hinder them.
Even after the light changes from “stop” to
“go,” it is necessary at times to proceed
with caution before advancing. After Paul’s
conversion and his waiting time in the
desert, he proceeded at full speed ahead.
He was setting up churches, making converts
and enjoying mostly great success wherever
he traveled. On one of his journeys, he
wanted to go into Asia on a missionary trip,
but was “forbidden by the Holy Ghost to
preach the word in Asia.” So his company
turned toward Bithynia, “but the Spirit
suffered them not.” (Acts 16:6-7). It
wasn’t God’s agenda, it was Paul’s. God
told Paul in a vision to go to Macedonia.
So he adjusted his agenda to agree with
God’s and went to Macedonia because there
was a ripe harvest waiting, and they reaped
it for Christ.
After all the wilderness hardships, the
Israelites finally were nearing the Promise
Land. At the very edge of the end of their
journey, they had to stop. Spies were sent
into the land and came back with a
double-sided report. Two of the spies were
jubilant and full of faith. “We can take
it; let’s go at once,” they reported.
However, ten naysayers came back filled with
fear of the “giants” and walled cities; they
gave an evil report. The people listened to
the negatives and heeded the warning of the
fearful reporters. They were ready to
return to Egypt! Many people start out
serving God only to turn their backs when
things don’t turn out as they expect. The
victory and prize belong to those who
persevere, not to the turncoats. All the
pleading of Caleb and Joshua, who had faith
to believe that God would successfully give
them the land, didn’t change the doubts that
the other ten spies had sown. The people
wanted to stone the bearers of good news!
They didn’t want to hear that God would be
with them to take what He had already given
them. They erected their own Stop sign.
It is unfortunate, but one voice of doubt
can drown out a host of faith-filled
saints. And when the majority of the voices
are filled with doubt, it requires
steadfastness to go against the doubters.
When God speaks and changes the light to
“Go,” then is the time to rev up our engines
and get under way for what He has called us
to do in spite of negative opposition.
It’s amazing that a small fixture hanging in
the middle of an intersection equipped with
three different colored lights can stop huge
vehicles with eighteen wheels. It is the
“authority” behind that small apparatus that
causes all traffic to stop, use caution or
go. So it is with God’s Word; it is the
authority of the Word that spurs us on to go
and do great things in the name of God.
When God says “go” He has already opened up
the way and made advance preparations for
success in the endeavor. He is the traffic
director at each intersection.
After the flood, God told Noah, “Go forth of
the ark.” (Genesis 8:16). It was time to
get on with life on earth and replenish it.
God told Abraham to “Get thee out of thy
country…unto a land that I will shew thee:”
(Genesis 12:1). He didn’t have a road map
even to his next destination. He had to go
in faith. If he had stayed in Ur, he would
never have fulfilled the destiny God had
planned for the Father of Israel.
There is a time for everything. A time to
go; a time for caution; a time to stop,
wait. Jesus told his disciples that after
He left them, He would send the Holy Ghost
who would tell them all things that they
needed to know to fulfill the mission He was
leaving with them. “…he shall teach you all
things, and bring all things to your
remembrance whatsoever I have said unto
you.” (John 14:26). However, He told them
to wait for the Holy Ghost, which would give
them power and authority to complete the
mission. It was said of them that they
turned the world upside down (actually right
If you sit too long in traffic after the
light turns green, you will soon hear honks
of the horns of the cars behind you. It is
good for God to place “honkers” behind us
when we hesitate to go forward when it is
time. The Holy Ghost acts as a “honker” to
urge us on to the task we have been anointed
to do. Forty years before he was ready,
Moses enthusiastically jumped into position
to be the leader of the Israelite slaves to
bring them to freedom. They rejected him.
After he had been in God’s school for forty
years and had learned how to survive in the
desert, he was prepared; but he wasn’t
willing. God had to “honk” at him from a
burning bush that was not consumed by the
fire. Thank God for burning bushes when we
need a boost at the “Go” signal!
God’s method seems to be to bless us first.
If that doesn’t get our attention, then He
will remove the hedge and allow troublesome
experiences to bring us to repentance and
commitment. Whatever He has to do, He
will—to bring us home. When Peter
recognized that it was Jesus who had told
them to let their fishing nets down on the
right side of the boat after an unsuccessful
night of fishing, that abundant blessing of
nets overflowing with the catch caused Peter
to feel like a “sinful man.” God’s first
choice is to bless us and enlighten us to
His glory and holiness, but if that doesn’t
stir us, He has other methods He will use.
It would be so much better if we would just
“cast our nets on the right side” to begin
with and move with God’s stop-s and go-s.
We could save ourselves a lot of heartache
and not have so much lost time to make up
for if we would be sensitive to the leading
of the Spirit in everything we do and not
wait for a burning bush, a honker or trouble
to bring us to God’s agenda.
Here’s my pen and paper; God, say on! I
want your agenda and travel plans!