by Pastor Tim Burt
I was recently able to reconnect over lunch with a buddy from grade school whom I grew up with. As kids, we spent years and years playing together. As we were reminiscing and laughing non-stop, we started talking about the creek.
There was a creek near where we lived that was a huge source of adventure from a very young age. We’d often go to the creek to get adventurous. As small kids, it seemed much larger to us than it does now as adults. It was only about 15-20 feet wide and usually not more than about 4 feet deep. In the winter, we could walk, slip, slide, and skate on it. In the Spring and Summer, we’d feed the ducks, sail homemade boats down it, and occasionally try to walk in it. Like all creeks, depending on the rainfall, the depth would rise and fall. When it rained, the current was fairly strong and when it hadn’t rained, their was little to no current. On a hot days, we’d experiment getting in to cool off. It was seldom a good idea. Sometimes the current would immediately drag us down the creek. We’d be grabbing on to anything on the shoreline to not drown and get out. I know—not to bright. You have to wonder. How many times did God save us from our stupidity.
Sometimes there was little to no current and so we thought it would be safer. But it wasn’t. The bottom of the creek was mucky-muck and you’d sink in like quicksand. And then there were sometimes huge tree branches down in the muck that your feet would get caught in. After a few really close calls, we wised up and stopped walking into that dangerous muck.
As my friend and I were talking and laughing about all these life near-misses, God spoke to my heart. I could hear Him clearly. He said, When Christians keep wandering back to some of their sinful ways, it’s like stepping into the mucky creek bottom. They are putting their faith and lives at risk! And sometimes when things go wrong, which it will because sin is always destructive, they blame me for the mucky experiences they go through.
Then the Lord reminded me of Colossians 3: 1-10 NIV which I know in my heart. It says, Colossians 3:1-10 (NIV) “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.”
As adults looking back at some of those dangerous moments, it may seem funny while reminiscing, but if you think about it, you could have lost your life many times over! I bet you have stories from your childhood like this!
God is always about love, blessing and protection! As adults, we should be much smarter and more discerning than we were as children. Why do Christians indulge in things God tells us to put out of our life? Are we being foolish and naïve like little children? Are we being rebellious toward God? Have we lost our reverence for God and His word which is only there to protect us? Whatever the answer is, God says, “…You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these…”
The funny thing is, I now live on a creek! I love it. I love to look at it because it’s beautiful! But I am also smart enough to stay out of it! And I am also purposing to do what God’s word says and not what Satan tries to temp me in! How about you?
Colossians 3:10 “…put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.”
In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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