One dark night recently, while traveling north on U.S. 285 where it's divided between Roswell and Vaughn, we noticed another traveler also headed north, but in the southbound lanes. Although that was dangerous, it's understandable how, on an unlighted highway at night, someone unfamiliar with the road could make a left-hand turn into the right-hand lane, which would be his driving lane, if it was a two-lane road.
It's coincidental that we were the only car traveling north on that stretch of road, but we were meeting lots of vehicles headed south, and I wondered why they hadn't gotten his attention about his mistake. As soon as we caught up with him, I moved into my left-hand lane and began blowing the horn. That got his attention and he immediately maneuvered across the deep median and into the northbound lane behind me. The agility with which he made that maneuver led me to believe that he was neither drunk nor asleep. Rather, he apparently had just turned onto the wrong lane in the darkness.
Christians occasionally get on the wrong path in life still being in the darkness (John 12:35, 36). Although, non-Christians on that same path may be headed in a different direction and know the Christian isn't behaving as a Christian should, they might not signal about the danger ahead. While there's only one path to salvation, whichever direction non-Christians are going, they're simply taking one of the many lanes that are part of the broad way to destruction (John 14:6; Acts 4:12; Matthew 713, 14; Ephesians 4:17-19).
Only Holy Spirit-led Christians going the right way on the right side of the road might be able to get the message across, if they're careful (1 Corinthians 2:13-16; Romans 8:5-7; Galatians 6:1). And if the errant Christian is alert enough and gets his wits about him, he'll make a lane change and get on the right path (Luke 15:11-24).
Keeping in the correct lane and helping others takes diligent study of God's word (our roadmap for life) that leads to growth and maturity (Hebrews 5:11-14; 2 Timothy 2:15). Even then, more mature Christians occasionally take the wrong lane (I've errantly walked into the ladies room at the airport only to exit rapidly when I noticed there were no urinals or I met a lady coming out). After we become Christians God forgives us when we confess our faults (Acts 3:36-39; 1 John 1:5-9).
It's likely that those headed south tried to signal the errant pickup of the danger, but to no avail. Some Christians on the wrong path won't listen to those going the opposite direction because every Christian that every non-Christian is headed for danger (hell). But we're to test all the spirits to see if they're from God remembering that he even used a talking donkey once to get a prophet's attention (1 Thessalonians 5:19-22; 1 John 4:1; Acts 17:11; Numbers 22:21-34).
Are you in the safe lane that leads to heaven? Do you signal others of the danger ahead if they're in the wrong lane?
Leonard Lauriault is a member of the Church of Christ in Logan. Contact him at email@example.com