Lean Not and Find Your Way by AChuckAllen
Today, I’d like to walk through Proverbs 3:5-6. This simple and powerful passage of Scripture can radically change the trajectory of your year and give you a huge leap into Your Best Year,
“ Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.  Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. ”
These two verses are among the most beloved in all the Bible. This text is striking in its simplicity. There is nothing difficult about it. It has been the hope and encouragement of countless multitudes of God’s people across the centuries.
Here is the obvious question: —”Lord, what do you want me to do?” Proverbs 3:5-6 suggests the basis on which godly and wise guidance will come. It is a short and simple…yet a Waterford Crystal Clear course in knowing God’s will for your life.
In our thinking, the word trust means to rely upon or to have confidence in. But the Hebrew word is stronger. The word means to put your full weight on something. To trust in the Lord is to lay your whole weight upon him.
In many versions the words “Do Not Depend on” is translated Lean Not! “Lean not to your own understanding.” It means to rest upon for partial support. You lean on something when you are not strong enough to stand alone. Do not depend…Do not lean…on what? On yourself.
The word understanding refers to our mental processes by which you look at a problem, you analyze it, and you decide how you are going to solve it. Understanding is simply the decision-making ability that God has given you.
When you take the word “depend,” put it with the word “understanding” and add the negative, you get an idea like this: “Use all your mental powers, but do not lean on them for total support.” Don’t trust in your own ability to figure out your life. So what do we do? It is a simple A, B, C.
a. Pray – Set your heart and prioritize your calendar to maximize the wisdom that the Lord will give you when you ask for it.
b. Fast – Set your life, for a season, apart from the things that you crave or desire more than the Lord.
c. Honor the Lord in energizing your prayers and fast by acting on what the Lord directs you to do!
I think that “seek or acknowledge” doesn’t do full justice to the original text. In the Hebrew this word is an imperative. It is a command. You could translate this by saying, “In all your ways know him.” It’s the kind of knowing that comes with personal experience. It means to know something through and through.
Seen in that light, we might translate verse 5 this way: “In all your ways know God intimately. In all your ways know God deeply. In all your ways know God personally. In every area of your life know God intimately, deeply and personally because when you know God that way in every area of your life, then he will direct your paths.”
“He will make your paths straight.” That brings me to the fifth word, which in the King James is translated “He shall direct your paths.” That is not bad. But I think the NLT is a little better: “and he will show you which path to take.”
It has the idea of a road which appears to be impassable. It seems to have a million turns and twists. As you study it, you discover that portions of the road are washed out, others are filled with potholes, still others with huge boulders. In some places the road apparently becomes a dead end.
It is the road of your life. That’s the road you are traveling right now. As you look at it, it appears to be covered with potholes and rocks. Some of you have come through a week filled with potholes and obstacles.
The Divine can and will fill the potholes and remove the obstacles.
Here is God’s message to you from Proverbs 3:5-6. If you will know God in every area of your life, he himself will take personal responsibility to make your way smooth and straight. This is why I finish every worship gathering with the blessing that He can more your crooked path straight! He will remove the obstacles if they need to be removed. He will fill in the potholes if they need to be filled. He will redirect the detour so that what seemed to be a dead-end turns out to be the shortest way to reach your destination.
Don’t lean for support on your own human understanding. In all your ways know God intimately. He will take the path of your life which seems to go up and down and around and sometimes seems to curve backwards , and he will make your way straight.
Many of us want to go through life leaning almost completely upon our own understanding. This the opposite direction of Your Best Year. A lot of us are basically control freaks. I number myself among that group. This passage is a warning to all of us control freaks who lay out life the way we want it and then say, “Here, God, you can now bless it.” God says, “I don’t work that way. You know me first. Put me first in everything including all your plans and all your thinking and all your scheming. Put me first. And I then will make your way straight.” “Then I will bless it.”
This is a revolutionary way of looking at life!
Here is the teaching of this passage stated in one sentence: God is much less concerned with what you do than with what kind of person you are. He is much less concerned with what you do; he is much more concerned with what kind of person you are.
Proverbs 3:5-6 ends with a promise. “He will make your paths straight.”
The Almighty, Transcendent God of the universe, he will direct your paths. That’s the God who says, “If you will but know me, I will take care of the details. Trust me. Rest your full weight on me. Know me in everything. And I, the God of the universe, will direct your paths.”
The will of God for your life is that you, in all your ways should know him because when you know him in every area He has said He will direct your paths. He promised, and He will not fail, He will direct your path.
He can give you Your Best Year!
Go in Peace, AChuck