Skip to main content

Ruin requires rescue

For people who are stumbling toward ruin, the message of the cross is nothing but a tall tale for fools by a fool. But for those of us who are already experiencing the reality of being rescued and made right, it is nothing short of God’s power. (I Corinthians 1:18 VOICE)

Ruin is the downfall, decay, or destruction of anything.  We call old dwellings we uncover in archaeological digs as "ruins", but we all refer to toast charred to a crisp in the toaster as "ruined".  Three things about ruin we need to realize:

1. It describes a condition in which the thing or one who was on the rise at one point is now on the decline.  It can be caused by being taken down a notch, as when we begin to think more highly of ourselves than we ought.  It can also be caused by being overthrown, as when someone goes up against another and finds they just didn't have the capacity or "talent" to continue in a position they wanted to maintain.  The decline can be gradual, or at such a whirlwind speed it makes one's head spin.  The precursor to a downfall is not always recognizable, but in the instances we discussed here, an individual usually has some issue of "pride" at the center of their upward climb which results in reaching a point where pride actually becomes the very thing which causes their "downfall".  

2. It can also describe the gradual process of "rotting away" where you stand. A long time ago, a good friend asked me if I was ready to take a big step forward in my career.  I was scared to death, but I also knew I could do it if I was given the right support.  Her wise words have stuck with me for years.  She simply reminded me that "green" meant I was still growing; "ripe" meant I was actually beginning the process of rotting where I was planted.  She wanted me to understand the importance of keeping myself in a position where I did not become too complacent in my work, always taking on new challenges, and keeping myself in a place where I could grow.  I think of her often as I consider those words, because they have been repeated many times by me as I speak with others going through times of feeling burnt out, wanting to take steps toward something new.  The truth is simple - we will rot if we just sit too long in the same place in life.  In relationships, for example, we sometimes allow a place of stagnancy to come which eventually becomes the means by which "ruin" or "decay" occurs.  If we are to avoid decay, we have to pay attention to the condition of our lives - that which is ignored long enough becomes the means by which decay is introduced.

3. It can also represent the condition described best by one whose life is reduced to useless fragments.  The sum of the fragments equals the whole, but as long as the fragments are reduced to a pile of rubble by either neglect or attack, the pile is really just a ruin.  We all have times when we feel like our life may contain "piles of rubble", but when our entire life begins to feel like that we get to a place of despair and depression.  Decay and decline left long enough will eventually lead to a place where we feel our life is "destroyed" beyond "putting back together again" - much like the old nursery rhyme of Humpty Dumpty.

The good news is that God specializes in taking run down, rejected, somewhat abused or overused lives and turning them into things of beauty beyond belief. We might think nothing good can come our of our messed up lives, but the good news is that of "rescue".  In places of ruin the only time something good comes out of that place is when there is a rescue!  God is our rescuer - he is the one who has the ability to seek out the living soul among the rubble of life's ruins. We just need to trust him to do the work of rescue!  Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce

Scrubbed Up and Ready to Go!

Have you ever considered just how 'clean' your hands really are? In nursing school, I remember this exercise we did where we rubbed hand lotion on our hands, then were told to go scrub them to practice a good handwashing technique. Most of us were going the extra mile by scrubbing back and front, in between the fingers and then even up above the wrist area. Surely our hands were clean, right? We came back to the room for the 'inspection' of our handwashing jobs only to find our instructor had turned the lights off, had a black light set up, and inspected our hands under that glowing beast! Guess what else 'glowed'? Our hands! The lotion was 'laced' with this 'dust' that illuminates under the black light, allowing each of us to see the specific areas around cuticles, under nails, and even here and there on our hands that got totally missed by our good 'handwashing' technique! What we thought was clean really wasn't clean at all. Clean