Advice From The Wrong Source

August 1, 2017
by Martin Wiles   - Listen to this devotional

Isaiah 8:19 – Someone may say to you, "Let's ask the mediums and those who consult the spirits of the dead. With their whisperings and mutterings, they will tell us what to do." But shouldn't people ask God for guidance? Should the living seek guidance from the dead? (NLT)

To buy or not to buy, that was the question.

I was three years in on a four-year car mortgage when the transmission on my Chevrolet Corsica began slipping. Those were the days when cars themselves were constructed better but the engines weren't. When the odometer reached 75,000 to 100,000 miles, it was time to trade. Mine was at 60,000. But the prices on cars had also risen over the previous three years.

So, I turned to my paternal grandfather. After all, he had grown up on the tail end of the Great Depression, and he was familiar with "robbing Peter to pay Paul". He'd never owned a new car, but he'd been particular when buying used ones.

"You can get your car fixed for the price of one car payment," he said.

Sounded good, but I was getting the itch to trade cars anyway. This seemed like a good excuse.

"If you trade, you're going to have four more years of payments," he continued. I had thought of that, too. (This was in a time period when I could actually afford a four-year payment plan.)

Although I went to a reputable source, I didn't take his advice. I traded a good car that could have been repaired at a modest price for four more years of higher payments. I regretted it later, but I couldn't undo my decision.

Isaiah warned his listeners about going to the wrong sources for advice. Instead of going to a living God, they were checking with mediums who supposedly consulted the dead for advice. Their actions were ludicrous — as were mine when I turned down sound advice.

Seeing signs that read Spiritual Advisor isn't that unusual. I've never been to one, but many have. Going there would be no different than Isaiah's peers who consulted mediums. God is the only adequate and dependable spiritual advisor. While I can't visit Him in person or hear Him audibly, I can know the mind of Christ.

God is my source for sound advice, and He gives the means to discover it through His Word, prayer, mature believers, and Christian counsellors. Even some secular sources — when filtered through God's Word — have sound information for making life decisions.

Let us make sure that we consult the right sources when advice is needed.

Prayer: Father, guide us to the proper sources when we have decisions to make. Amen.

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Martin Wiles <>
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks Martin for sharing this devotional filled with good advice. Blessings.

    Thank you so much for this reminder! The Bible is the best life manual of all. God Bless.

    Amen Martin, a good word for today’s world.

    Ah well yes, we have all made decisions that on reflection could have been better if chosen again.

    Martin, this is a great lesson you shared. I love your opening Scripture and pray many people will realize this important truth.

    I did something similar. I traded up on my Iphone and got strapped, handcuffed and imprisoned for an additional 2 years. I ask myself often, “why did I do that?”
    Thanks Martin for your reflective devotional.
    God bless you.

    Martin this is probably not the comment you want to hear in response to your final bit of advice, I.E.”Let us consult the right source….” You did. There was nothing wrong with the CHOICE of the source, (your grandfather). It was in the receiver. I think in response to your choice, as well as in the choices many of us make is the well known statement, “There are none so blind as those who WILL NOT see.” Right??

    Good morning Martin,
    I read your Devotional, as always with great pleasure and many blessings.
    One comment you have made caused me great concern…”I can’t visit Him in person, or hear Him audibly”. How are you listening?
    I truly feel that Jesus, through the Holy Spirit HAS communicated with me, just as I have the privilege of talking to Him.
    It reminds me of the Hymn “When I walk through the garden alone”.
    If you ask, Jesus WILL answer – audibly.

    Good advice for all Martin. I too struggle with making the correct decisions, and when I don’t listen to the “small still voice”, I, like you, often come out on the short end of the stick.
    Thank you for reminding me to take my time, and wait upon the Lord.

    Dear Martin Wiles,
    Thank you for making known such good advice.
    The source of advice could be within an arm’s reach… The Bible.
    May we always seek God’s truth.
    In Jesus’ name. Amen.
    Keep writing.

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