Thursday, September 10, 2015

Prisoner of… - Martin Wiles

Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Ephesians 4:1 NLT

I’d never been on the inside of a jail cell before. 

Life wasn’t going the way I intended, and I was only 16. The Christian atmosphere I’d been reared in wasn’t working for me anymore. I was tired of the rules and regulations and had been influenced by “hippie” culture. Since nothing was holding me back, a friend and I packed my car with a few belongings and headed for the hills—literally. 

The trouble began when I took a side road down the mountain and got stuck in the snow. With no other choice presenting itself, we hoofed it up the mountain to a motel where we used a pay phone to call for a friend’s help. 

The hotel attendant recognized us as the runaways he had heard about on the local info system and called the police. Before we could get back to our car, the blue lights appeared and we were cuffed and stuffed in the local jail until our parents could retrieve us. 

The apostle Paul was a literal prisoner on more than one occasion due to his bold preaching of the gospel in places where people didn’t want to hear it or where they believed it would affect the local tourist business. These prison stints were temporary, but he was a permanent prisoner of Jesus Christ and had been since their meeting on the Damascus Road. 

The list of what I can be imprisoned by is endless: addictive substances, pride, praise from others, gambling, pornography, co-dependent relationships, materialism, the almighty dollar, performing good works for the wrong reason, sports. My jail time is better spent as a prisoner to serving the Lord. When his agenda is my agenda, this prison will be a wonderful place to get my three hots and a cot. 

Rather than succumbing to the plethora of things that could imprison me, I choose to be a prisoner to serving God. 

Let God’s love imprison you and free you at the same time. 

Prayer: Father, imprison us to a lifestyle of loving 
You and serving others.

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