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Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Get Up Off Your Belly!

The other night, our four year old daughter, Aubrey, had disobeyed several things Joy & I had asked her to do. As we were tucking her in, we reminded her that bedtime was bedtime, not a time to repeatedly get out of her bed to play (her specialty of late!). We let her know if she chose to get out of bed and disobey, she would have a consequence.

A few short minutes later, to our surprise, we witnessed Aubrey, creeping ever so slooooowly out of her room on her belly, and she crawled like this all the way to the bathroom. A couple minutes later, she emerged and immediately returned to her belly and crawled all the way back into her bedroom. Now, Aubrey knows she is allowed to get out of bed to use the bathroom at night, but in her four year-old mind, she wasn't taking any chances on getting into trouble again, hence the army crawl. She didn't realize that we were upstairs and could see her, much to our amusement!

I was thinking about that this morning and smiling at Aubrey's silly behavior when God reminded me how often adults do the same thing. We choose to run in a direction that God has clearly asked us not to go, and try to convince ourselves that He can't see us. The enemy certainly helps by whispering to us that "What can't be seen surely won't be punished. It can just be our little secret..." And more often than we'd like to admit, we take that bait.

What foolishness! God, who loves and adores his children, promises in Hebrews 13:5, that He'll never leave us. Moreover, Luke 8:17 says, "For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open."

God loves us and wants us to make good choices. Not because we could ever do anything to earn or deserve eternal life and forgiveness - we can't! But because He desires for us to walk in freedom, in purity, in holiness. The grace He offers us is not only grace to forgive us when we've sinned, but also the grace to not commit that sin in the first place! It's grace that enables us to stay close by His side, to run to Him, embrace Him and seek His strength to overcome whatever temptation our flesh, the world, or the devil is dangling in front of our faces at any given moment.

The truth is, many times we lose the battle simply because we don't believe we're strong enough to overcome whatever is tempting us. We forget the truth that once we've accepted Christ, sin no longer owns us. Our old self has been crucified in Him and we are a NEW creation! Romans 6:17-18 offers this sweet truth: "Thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin...You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness. "

So the next time you find yourself crawling on your belly in the wrong direction, remember: You are not alone. God sees you. He loves you. And He offers you freedom from sin and the grace to choose life - all you have to do is get back on your feet and run to Him.

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