Skip to main content

Bigger than life

What a God! His road stretches straight and smooth. Every God-direction is road-tested. Everyone who runs toward him makes it. (Psalm 18:30)

I just returned from a road trip that didn't stretch across the loveliest of landscape, nor did it include the best of roadways. It seems every state has a different way of paving and differing priorities for how they will accomplish the task. Some places had potholes, rough surfaces, and barely visible striping dividing the lanes. Other places had that nice sound-proofing rubber overlay that made driving over those places quite nice. We all travel different types of roads, don't we? Some of us get way too many of those bumpy, under-maintained patches, relishing those moments when there is just a short break from dodging hazards and enjoying the ride. We desire the smooth patches, but we develop a certain sense of alertness when we might have to dodge this hazard or the next!

Whenever I travel to the high country, occasionally making my way out of the dry desert lands, I manage to encounter four-legged creatures that like to stand by the roadway and even dart across it from time to time. Those larger than life elk and sweet brown-eyed deer all look so innocent, but when they want to go from this patch of green grass to the next, there is no stopping them. People who drive around these animals all the time know their habits, but I do not. I always slow down, take notice of how they are acting, and observe for the slightest movement that indicates they are intending to dart. I love seeing them, but their presence makes me hyper-vigilant and attentive. Did you ever stop to consider the hazards in your path as those things that may just make you 'hyper-vigilant and attentive'?

Yes, God prepares straight and smooth patches for us, but even the patches that are a little rougher than we might like are 'road-tested' by God. He knows each of the hazards and helps us to become hyper-vigilant and attentive to their presence. We cannot ignore the reality that we sometimes travel paths God never intended for us to travel. Does that mean we aren't going to be alert to the hazards? Not necessarily, but we might not believe any exist just because we don't immediately see them. The thing about the elk and the deer by the roadways is that they 'blend in' with their surroundings so well. Their hides are made so they can hide! The hazards are there, they just don't reveal themselves all that easily to us.

I think that is why God asks us to take the paths he has prepared for us rather than launching off into territories he doesn't really want us to go into - the hazards may be pretty large and come at us unnoticed. If you have ever wanted an argument to support obedience, that may just be one of the best ones. We will always encounter hazards bigger than we'd like whenever we are traveling into areas of disobedience. They won't always be immediately apparent, but they are bigger than life nonetheless! Just sayin!


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

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,

Do me a favor

If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care—then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. (Philippians 2:1-4) Has God's love made ANY difference in your life? What is that difference? Most of us will likely say that our lives were changed for the good, while others will say there was a dramatic change. Some left behind lifestyles marked by all manner of outward sin - like drug addiction, alcoholism, prostitution, or even thievery. There are many that will admit the things they left behind were just a bit subtler - what we can call inward sin - things like jealousy,