Ah-Ha Moment #4: “Come here, come on baby, let’s go home.”
He wasn’t going to listen. He didn’t know me. He didn’t know my voice. That wasn’t his fault. He was doing what puppies do. He was playing. He had left the safety of his home to venture out into the big wide world and had landed smack dab in the middle of a mess. Why should he leave the freedom and the fun he was having? Because he didn’t realize the danger. We could see it. All the people in the cars around him knew that one wrong move and he would likely be killed and they were able to stop and prevent the danger. But he still had to get out of the road cause just like there are different cars traveling the roads every day, there are different temptations, different dangers, and different situations that are all around us trying to keep us from our Heavenly Father.
Ah-Ha Moment #5: “Be still.”
God cannot step in, pick us up, and carry us out of the mess unless we stop. We have to be still. We have to get quiet. I struggle with this every single day. Getting quiet and still in my heart. When I don’t know which direction to go, what to do, what step to take, it’s because I have to be still. Then we can either jump the ditch to safety or we might just be so lost, confused, and overwhelmed by it all that all we can do is fall down on our knees and submit. God will reach down, pick us up and hold us close and He will carry us to safety.
How do you get still? Take 15 minutes of quiet time. If you have never done that before, start with 5. Just sit. I light a candle sometimes. Turn out the lights so I am not distracted. When you first start it will be hard to turn off all that is swirling around you but keep turning that focus back to God and give yourself grace. Grace when the grocery list starts forming in your head, grace when you start thinking of all the things you need to do at work, grace when the honey-do list that your wife made for you starts unrolling in your brain. Be kind when you mentally roll that list up and put it away and then turn your focus back on your Father. Be quiet. And just listen.
That’s how I got the ah-ha moment from the puppy. I didn’t “see” all of these points at the time. I didn’t jump in the car after finding his home full of insight and singing praises. (Yes I did find his house; it had a “Beware of the dog” sign in the window, irony much?) It took thinking through what happened. Seeing the snapshots of it in my mind and getting alone with God so that He could teach me. I had to be still.
Ah-Ha Moment #6: (Last one, thanks for hanging in there): Do we bite the hand that saves us (or pee on it)? Do we recognize the miracles and blessings that are all around us? Do we slow down enough to realize when God steps in and wraps us in His arms? Or are we so hyped up, so excited, that we never experience the joy and the peace when He holds us. Or worse, do we attack Him when He corrects, when He disciplines, and bite back the very hand that wants to comfort? God uses people to minister to His children. It may be a pastor in the pulpit; it may be a Godly man speaking to your son at youth. It may be a teenager pouring her heart out to her friend when she sees her going down the wrong path. It may be a woman stepping into traffic to save a puppy.
How do we respond to those messengers from God? Do we embrace them? Honor their words with respect and acceptance? Or do we get angry and pout? Walk away. Reject them and therefore reject God? Or do we run away, oblivious to the danger around us. Refusing to hear their calls, their advice, their wisdom and continue down the path of our own destruction?
Do we stop, listen, and hear not only with our ears and our brains but our hearts? Do we allow the words to help sharpen us, make us stronger, keep us safe, or do we only get offended, and lash out or run away? Satan wants you to get your feelings hurt. He is the master at manipulating words to wound. He also wants to kill steal and destroy. Do you think you are immune to him? If so, then you are playing in traffic my friend. We can see the danger in the cars speeding down the road and we know we are no match for a 4,000 pound vehicle. (Fun Fact)
What makes us think we can stand alone against the Indy driver of sin? (ok, enough car similes).
I am no match for satan on my own. I was fortunate enough to be in the right place at the right time to help a puppy out of peril that he didn’t even realize he was in. But my God is always there, all the time, to rescue, to hold, and to protect the children that He loves and He loves all of us (No matter what kind of car your sin is). Get out of the road, listen to the voice that is calling you. Be still and allow Him to wrap his arms around you.