My friend, Ronnie Dean “The Preaching Machine” of Missouri shared with me a story six months ago that really resonated with me. He shared a trip that he took to California and some friends invited him to see the massive, majestic Redwoods. These trees have endured tornadoes, weathered storms and stood the test of time. To his surprise he was introduced to something that floored him as he learned what toppled the tree.
The regal Redwood didn’t fall because of a massive storm, harsh winds, devastating earthquake or downsizing in our economy – what leveled the tree was TERMITES! Just last month, I heard a loud thud while in my home in Maryland while typing on the computer. The back half of the house shook violently and the dishes in our china cabinet ratled and I went outside and a 70 foot oak tree collaped, hit our roof and bounced off falling to the ground like a daredevil with no parachute! I went out to survey the damage (first, to make sure the roof didn’t have any gaping holes) and two to see what caused the fall? Sure, enough it was due to termites!
My pastor shared a story nearly 20 years ago that has stuck with me like a magnet on a refridgerator. He shared of a story dating in the 1800′s of a man fetching water. He had dismounted his horse and went with his pale to retreive some fresh water at the ravine. As he was returning back towards his horse to his surprise was an 8ft grizzly bear! He dropped both buckets of water and screamed: “God, if YOU don’t help me I am utterly helpless!” He didn’t recall how it unfolded but somehow he by-passed the bear, jumped back on his horse (without the water) and raced home safely. That night as he try to fall asleep he couldn’t help but recall what transpired early in the day. At that very moment a mosquitto came in through the open window and began to intimidate him as it would land on his nose briefly and take off again. This happened for several hours.
Growing frustrated and losing precious sleep the man tried in vain to kill the mosquitto to no avail. At sunrise and no sleep the fly flew off with the victory. Exhausted and frustrated as he dressed for work it hit him at lunch what happened. He thought: “I knew I was utterly helpless when I faced that bear yesterday without God’s intervention. However, the irony is I thought I could handle the mosquitto!” WORD OF THE DAY: God wants to handle not only the BIG BEARS you face but the minute misquittos as well!! The Bible says: “CAST ALL YOUR CARES UPON THE LORD. Why? Because GOD CARES FOR YOU!
The Bible is clear: “Pride comes before the fall.” As Christians we tend to “pride” ourselves on the monster sins we may omit but fail to see the sins we commit. Keep in mind that sin is sin. Not glamorous but Gospel Truth. Even the so called “little sins” crucified Christ the same. We should desire to live right not only because sin is wrong but because it grieves Christ. FACT: Most people don’t start out snorting cocaine but all smoking a cigarette. They didn’t steal a Benz before cutting class, cheating on a test or confiscating someone else’s toys.
In business, politics, sports, ministry and LIFE we must realize that Satan comes at us from every corner and different directions. We need to not just LOOK OUT out for BIG sins but be cognizant of compromises now. My friend, Tony Nolan has a way with words. He said something that also stuck with me over the years. “If it is GREY stay AWAY!” If we have to ask is this wrong then most likely it probably is. It is true an “ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.” We don’t have to fall into temptation but FAITH UP and with God we can resist the temptation. The Bible notes: “And God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can’t stand up against it. When you are tempted. He will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it.” – 1 Corinthians 10:13
WORD TO THE WISE: We would be better to apply His plan now than rely on our back up plan later. We need boundaries now to help us live life in victory. Values + Virtue = VICTORY. However, pushing the envelope just leads to not only picking up paper but the pieces in the process.
NOTICE VIDEO below. No, it wasn’t from termites but its worth a look. Regardless, if from termites or our own terrible mistakes we cause harm not only to ourselves but our own home and everyone around us. Today, lets determine to STICK TOGETHER and PRAY FOR ONE ANOTHER. May we in love hold each other accountable, look out for pitfalls that can cause a brother to stumble and be looking for BLIND SPOTS that loved ones may not see. I learned long ago that the Obvious isn’t obvious.
I got GOOD NEWS! We’re overcomers with Christ and may we be mindful that even “little sins” today can become BIG problems tomorrow. CONSIDER what areas you are vulnerable to and erect safe guards now to help you live to the fullest in the freedom only offered by our faith in Christ. Friends, we got to get Right, get Ready, get Real and get Rolling because God is coming back. Let’s not let little termites topple us from the great, grand work of grace God calls us. The beauty about God is when we do fall – He still has a way to pick us up, dust us off and whisper words of hope and healing in our ear to move on for Him.
Truth is we live in a FALLEN world and we have all fell short of God’s glory. Personally, nothing worse than a pious punk in the pulpit. We need less Pharisees and more of the Prince of Peace. I have a few friends but very few sing like my dear friend, MICHAEL ENGLISH. In two weeks, my parents, Ruth and I are going to reunite with him at the Gaither Vocal Band concert in Salisbury, MD on Sept 9. So since we have all dropped the ball, made mistakes and fallen may his song below remind us all of the goodness of God. We are the clay and He is the Potter and praise JESUS, He didn’t throw the clay away! It is true, termites are TERRIBLE but God’s grace is immeasurable!