Proverbs 10:17: He who heeds discipline shows the way to life, but whoever ignores correction leads others astray.
Seven weeks in Canada, 17 communities and 17 VBSs, 4,000 miles in the air and 5,000 on the ground; I was ready to go home. After I was finished with a speaking date in northern Minnesota, I was anxious to get on the road to Kansas City. As you would expect, I chose the quickest Google-maps route: I-35 through Minnesota, Iowa and Missouri. Unfortunately, I spent more time dodging traffic cones, jersey barriers and construction equipment than I did on cruise control.
I’m not sure exactly where on the drive I realized this, but navigating construction zones was emblematic of what Holy Spirit is doing with every one of us that calls ourselves Christian. We are saved, or Justified, by faith, but God wants us to be transformed from our sinful old self into His son or daughter. The “churchy” word for this process is Sanctification, and it requires conscious effort, realigning our thoughts, words and deeds away from self and toward God.
How does sanctification occur? Going back to my trip, sometimes it means following the boring “Google maps” route at times, and at others navigating an unexpected “God detour.” Following the speed limits keep you from hurting yourself or others. Let’s not forget that our fellow Christian travelers are also on that road, so accepting discipline, forgiving each other’s trespasses, and encouraging each other are key if we are all to reach our destination. Finally, if we don’t accept discipline or are not willing to “call out” a fellow Christian who is driving recklessly, a wreck could ensue.
I would encourage you to think about your Sanctification journey. Are you speeding? Are you driving outside the lines? Or, are you going down a road you shouldn’t be? Do you have a flat tire or out of gas? Wherever you are on your trip, be assured the Lord always responds to 911 calls, the road is never closed and there are fellow Christians there to help.
Dave Smith – LAMP Pilot