Monday, October 15, 2018

Staying in the Lines - Martin Wiles

If you love me, you will keep my commandments. John 14:15 ESV
Although no lines were present, I struggled to stay within them.
I had passed my rite of passage and secured my driver’s license. Now I was anxious to get on the highway legally. We lived ten miles from a major city, and I happily jumped behind the wheel when Mom said let’s go to town.
Crews had recently paved the highway from our house to town. One thing the highway department hadn’t quite finished was painting the lines. How could I stay on my side of the road when no lines existed to show me where my side was? Mom told me to imagine where the center of the road was and remain to the right of that imaginary line. I did.
Jesus painted the lines for believers when He said they would obey His commands—commands given thousands of years before to Moses on Mount Sinai.
Staying inside God’s lines takes discipline. Satan loves to tempt me to get outside of the lines. Such as when I get behind a slow driver and I’m in a hurry but there’s a double yellow line, which makes it illegal to pass. Staying behind a slow driver aggravates me, so I’ve passed where I shouldn’t have. Not passing takes patience—and discipline. God’s commands are for my wellbeing. I know this, and disciplining myself to obey keeps me within the boundaries.
Learning to drive took practice. Remaining in God’s lines does as well. First, I have to know God’s commands. Once I’ve mastered the knowledge, I must practice obeying. Doing so isn’t always easy—or convenient.
Fortunately, God provides others to help me stay within the lines. While my enemy will also provide many who tempt me to drive outside the lines, God will send people to help me stay within them. But I must search for good company, knowing bad company corrupts good morals.
Remaining on God’s side takes practice. I didn’t practice driving one time and then hit the road. Even after obtaining my license, I had to have an adult with me until I reached a certain age. I also had to study the driver’s manual before taking the driver’s test. God gives the guidebook in His Word. Digesting it daily is necessary if I want to stay within the lines.
Drive inside the lines God established. Life is sweeter, and you’ll be happier.

Prayer: Father, guide us by Your Spirit so that we might stay within the boundaries You’ve established for us. 

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