Can anyone understand their own way?

Plans are established by seeking advice; so if you wage war, obtain guidance. A person’s steps are directed by the Lord. How then can anyone understand their own way? It is a trap to dedicate something rashly and only later to consider one’s vows. The glory of young men is their strength, gray hair the splendor of the old.
-Proverbs 20:18,24-25,29 MSG

As I read this proverb this morning I thought about the somewhat diverse ways that the Lord leads and directs us. In a sense God's interactions with us are a mystery - as one verse says, 'How then can anyone understand their own way?" Yet I find that there are principles in the scripture that will help us know God's will. When I read about the trap of snap decisions I think of how patience has helped me understand God's will in a matter - not that it is easy.

I smiled when I read about gray hair being a splendor. Yet I understand that Solomon is teaching us that wisdom sometimes only comes with age. Often the strength and strong willed determination of youth cannot grasp the lessons that only life experiences can teach us. So I wonder if one teaching in these verses might be one of mentoring - perhaps God's plans are best established when the strength of youth is mixed with the wisdom of age?

Lord, sometimes we follow you best together. Help us to build mentoring relationships with others.


  1. Thank you for that encouragement, Bob. Mentoring can be a bit scary sometimes, but it has also brought me moments of incredible joy! I am so thankful for the opportunity God has given me to provide a steadying and loving hand to the young people He sends my way.

    1. Thanks for the comment crownring! Another word for mentoring is discipling - very biblical ideas.


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