Thursday, August 20, 2009

Moose Alert

Bible Reading: Hebrews 3:12-13

As darkness approached, our eyes strained to detect unusual movements by the side of the highway. This was Newfoundland – the location of a recent trip taken by Sandra and myself. The scenery, people and experiences were really enjoyable. However, along with great scenery came the constant warning to always stay alert for that huge wild animal known as the moose. They are very numerous in the province, hard to see, especially at night, and can easily result in destruction to car and occupants if hit on the road at high speed. Moose can dart into the middle of the road in a second without warning. Unlike other wildlife, they are not easily spooked by a vehicle.

We were traveling along the highway one evening with my cousin and his wife. Unlike me, my cousin Terry is used to these roads and has vast experience watching for and seeing moose as he drives. I strained to find a moose which might be lurking in the woods and bushes near the road. But, I failed to see even one. Each time on the trip that we did see a moose, it was cousin Terry who saw the moose and alerted us. One moose appeared within one meter of our vehicle! Terry has sharpened his peripheral vision to detect any sign of a moose along both sides of the road. His experience now protects him from danger and enables him to avoid accidents far better than most drivers.

This recent experience with a moose reminded me of how sin can act like a moose in my life. To paraphrase God’s words to Cain, sin is crouching at my door (Genesis 4:7). In its various forms, it can easily ambush me from the side “bushes” in my life. Wrong thoughts, attitudes, desires and influences can spring up into my vision without warning. Like the warning for moose, the warning from God about various forms of sin is designed to literally save our lives. One “sin alert” for us is found in Hebrews 3: 12-13:

“Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God. You must warn each other as long as it is called “today”, so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God.” (NLT)

The above words remind me of how little prepared I have been to “see” the sin of a wrong thought or attitude crouching at me from the sidelines. I intend to sharpen my alertness to sin so that I can keep making progress on the highway of life and warn others when I detect danger about to pounce on them. Sin alertness is far more necessary and much more useful for you and me than even the advice about moose. In this way, we benefit for now and eternity; help others in the process and accomplish God’s purpose for us in this world.

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