The other day, I made a left turn through a yellow-into-red turn arrow, only to find myself staring down the shiny chrome grill of an oncoming navy blue Dodge Ram/Ford F-150/Chevy Silverado….didn’t catch the make other than that it was BIG and headed straight for me.
It happened in an instant, and thank the Lord I was able to complete my illegal turn unscathed. Feeling a bit sheepish, the first thought that entered my mind was “yeah, it was stupid of me to turn on yellow-red, but hey, the reason I’m on the road in the first place is because I’m taking some household stuff to the donation center at Goodwill. Surely my good deed is the only thing that matters.” Then another voice popped into my head and said, “Are you serious? You think donating stuff to Goodwill allows you to drive like a maniac getting there?”
That second thought made sense, and I was convicted. I mean, if a cop had pulled me over for my infraction, he wouldn’t have cared one wit where I was headed or how many babies I’d saved from burning buildings or how many little ladies I’d helped across the street. He’d ticket me for this one act of disobedience, and rightly so.
I’ve been thinking about how this translates to a Christian walk. There’s a reason God wants us to obey. He has lots of signals: the yellow to warn us we are getting close to sinning; the red to let us know we’ve already stepped over the line, and the green to call us to His purpose. Ignoring any one of those signals from God could leave us face to face with something that was never God’s intent. And obeying God in one area doesn’t give us license to disobey Him in another!
We live in a country where we are blessed with the freedom to obey the laws. It’s our choice. Granted, my choice to turn against a yellow/red was a spontaneous one, but it was my choice nonetheless. It’s the same with God. We have the choice to first of all read His Word so we know the right choices to make, and then we have the freedom to make those choices. It’s completely up to us.
“But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15
“If you love me, you will obey what I command. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.” John 14:15-21
“This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world.” 1 John 5:3-4