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the Rope and the threads

April.8.2009

I seem to run into most of my ‘enlightenments’ while discussing situations with others.  I say this because today, while talking with a friend, I realized what God has been teaching me the past few weeks and how to put it into words that resonate with my mind.  Well, I don’t know how to make things flow so I will jump right in even though it’s still freezing.

Quite a few times in the past week, God has been showing me how I quickly fill my time with events or hangouts that I feel would be fun or exciting.  While these things in themselves aren’t evil, and I know God could use them for His glory and purpose if He wanted to, that is not my motivation for participating.  My motivation comes from selfish reasons, mostly that my flesh would rightly enjoy these worldly activities.

He keeps bringing me back to this verse.

  • “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.” Ephesians 5:15-16

Even tonight as I was babysitting, this verse came up in a children’s devotional.  It’s not that the things I fill my time with are evil in and of themselves – God can and has used these for good in my life and those around me before.  But, as wise children of the Lord (where our wisdom is heavenly and filled with fruit), we are to not walk around on this earth participating in the things of this earth for solely our pleasure – then it is not real, true, lasting, vivid pleasure at all.  We are to walk with our eye single, focused wholly on the One who made it, doing everything for the spread of His glory – this automatically produces joy in us: to be around the Creator and Sustainer, from whose right hand pleasures flow forevermore.

God has been teaching me that my relationship with Him is like a rope (bear with me).  This strong, thick rope is connected to the Lord and He is faithfully and continually pulling me up to Himself.  These activities/events that so easily catch my attention are mere threads going various directions – never straight up as to where my gaze should be steadily focused.  They lead to various people, social events, thoughts, objects, and adventures.  They are so thin and delicate, yet somehow have the power to allure me away to more enticing places.  Each one by itself is easily disregarded – it is not a big deal in the grand scheme of things.  I sometimes grab onto one – and, being only a thread – it eventually breaks (coming back like an overstretched rubber band to pop me) and I realize my need for the stronger rope.  Where the devil has his power is when he fills the cloudless sky with many threads, and as I look up to the One my eyes glance away towards the threads.  I start to become so entangled in the busyness of life that I no longer have any hands to clench the durable and proven rope.  That is where the beauty of the Lord’s grace comes in.  I start looking around and realizing I am still moving upward and not by my own strength or grip.  I look and see my God is faithful. Knowing me and my easily distractible eyes, He has not only put this rope in front of me to hold, but also has it tied firmly and permanently to me.  I finally look straight up and see this rope He has provided, the one that has been there all along, is made up of an innumerable amount of brightly colored and sparkling threads, which glisten in the light of the Son.  The way He has planned for me to go – in order that I might be a sheep to spread the knowledge of His fragrance around the world – is already intertwined with interesting people, blessed events, joyful thoughts, lasting treasure, and radiant adventures.  I just have to trust Him enough not to grab onto rubber band-like grey threads along the way.

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