Anyone who know me knows I love a good hike. Other than hunting lurking mountain lions, which freak me out, I love a dirt trail. The sun alternating with the shade on my skin, as I walk under age-old majestic trees. Fallen leaves crunching under our feet. Hopping over a creek, with the sounds of chirping birds, and scurrying whatevers in the bushes as we pass. Making me nervous every time, the kids don’t like to stay on the trail, but they like to forage for any leeway through tangled brush to find a new way. A hidden path that gives them a shortcut, or new adventure. I’m always calling out, “Hey, you guys, stay on the trail!” If I’m feeling less bossy, I’ll call out, “Ok, but that’s where rattlesnakes hide out..hope they don’t get you!” This usually rangles the couple adventurous ones, and they come scrambling back to my overprotective legs. I want them with me. Safe. On a well traveled path. Where I can protect them.
The Lord said, “Stand in the ways and see, ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls.
But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’
I was speaking with someone recently, about the why’s and how-come’s of ditching her God to play around in the world. She had been gone from us all for 8 years, and I wanted to know how that happens.
“I’ve just learned from it all that you can never say never.”
If someone had told her the year before, that she’d be neck deep in sin, and floundering for her faith, she said she would have scoffed. But here this young woman was, once as close to me as a sister, seen for the first time in almost 10 years.
Never say never…
I realize what that premise is. Nobody’s perfect…We’re not above the sliding slope of sin…Don’t think of yourself more highly than you ought to…etc.
Oh I get the premise. I agree with the italics.
I just don’t think I’m on board with the flippancy.
I don’t want to waste years of my life to find out there’s nothing better. I don’t want to mess up what I have. I don’t like negative consequences, and I don’t want to be far from Jesus!
I’m going to be a little bold right here. Maybe even stand on the precipice of dogmatic. Do I dare?
I think you can say, “Never.”
Because of our sinful nature, handed down to us, I’ll still fall down. I’ll scrape my knees, and might even get a scab. When it falls off I might even have a small scar, but it’s from hiking through. Going forward. Not paying attention to where I’m going because I’m looking up towards Heaven.
I’m not perfect. I skin my knees a lot. Have to apologize for words I’ve said that I didn’t think through, or wasn’t silent when I needed to be. But those wounds were unintentional. Unmalicious. And The Lord puts a bandaid on those pretty quick.
You can’t stop every sinful act, but you can purpose in your heart on the biggies.
I have purposes in my heart. Big, fat, stare-you-down-hard purposes.
Even though he’s amazing, I’m not going to sleep with him because he’s not my husband.
I really like that, but I’m not going to steal it.
Just say no. No drug is worth my life, or my self.
I will not lie to you no matter who you are.
I will finish this race with endurance, all the way to the end, and anyone sitting in the pews at my funeral will be able to say, ‘she loved Jesus…’
No wasted years.
If you’re tempted to forge a new way, let me tell you there’s no shortcut. It’s a tangled, briar-y, thorny mess making your own way. Don’t head into dangerous places where camouflaging snakes make their poison, and watchful lions patiently lie in wait. Find the old path. The well traveled one that points to Jesus Christ.
Stay on the trail! For the love of God…