Monday, December 26, 2011

Lines in the Sand

Do you remember the story in the gospel of John where a "harlot" is brought before Jesus caught in the act of adultery? The people want to stone her, but pause long enough to ask Jesus what he thinks of the situation. If you remember, before Jesus speaks a single word, he begins to draw in the dirt with his finger. I don't know about you, but I've always wondered why Jesus would do such a strange thing. Some say it was a word or phrase that pertained to the situation, others figure he was just "doodling" while gathering his thoughts, but I have a different thought.

I believe He drew…a line.

Metaphorically speaking, to "draw a line in the sand" is to establish a point that shall not be crossed. It is a way of saying, "you may go no further". You see, I believe Jesus was drawing a line in the sand as if to say, "No more!" Jesus knew these people were stiff-necked folks full of religion, void of love, and empty of the life of God. I do believe that line said to all, "Today, this sort of nonsense comes to an end!"

Can I prove it? Heck no, but it's as good of a hypothesis as I've ever heard and I kind of like it!

Today, I too am drawing a line in the sand.

Back in September, I wrote a post entitled, "WARNING: Throwing Rocks Will Get You…Nowhere Good!" Please know that I meant every word of that post but honestly, I just didn't have the "whatever" to actually walk it out at the time. Today, I am reaffirming the commitment I made in that post. I am drawing my own line in the sand and declaring "no more"! By the way, if you are wondering just what I had to say in that post feel free to check it out. If not, cool beans!

Guys, I really wish the "stuff" that junks up our hearts and minds could be easily dealt with, but I suppose it just takes time, a lot of prayer, and a lot of Jesus. Jesus said that He came to set captives free. He did not say it happens instantaneously.

Over the past several weeks, I have come to see more clearly than ever that life is too short and too full of hurt and pain for anyone who names Christ as Savior to be "throwing logs on the fire". In other words, there's more than enough hell-fire strife in the world without me making things worse with hurtful words and mean spirited rhetoric. Honestly, I just don't want to continue to use any part of my life to make things worse for anyone when I could be using my energy and gifts to make things better. The bible says that our witness to the world is our love for each other. If that is the case, my witness has been a poor one at best. For that (and a host of many other things), I am very sorry. I am not your Holy Spirit friends and I do not possess the capacity nor have I been given the right to judge the motives of anyone. And the people said….amen.

With that, I would like to reaffirm my commitment to NEVER AGAIN write a blog post (or Facebook post) that attacks my brothers and sisters in the body of Christ in ANY WAY!

Why? Because I have been completely persuaded by our gracious Lord that we have been called to love each other, support each other, and treat each other as He would love, support, and treat each of us. That means each and every person no strings attached, no conditions.

At the end of the day, we must all carry our hurts and pains to Jesus if we truly hope to be free. No amount of mudslinging will ever undo a bad experience or heal any wound. I should know. Only Jesus can restore us and fill our lives with purpose, hope, and meaning regardless of what anyone has said or done to us. If you are hurt, take it to Jesus. If you want justice, take it to Jesus. If you are angry, bitter, or full of unforgiveness (if that's really a word), take it to Jesus. Hit back, and you'll end up with a black eye every single time. Again, I should know!

He still sets captives free and only He has the strength to turn that key in the lock and open the prison door. Trust me; I'm speaking from experience here!

So for all of you who have been concerned, offended, or completely baffled by my posts over the past couple of years, please rejoice for I am finished being "ugly"! I will continue to write (if God allows), but I will only write that which will edify my church family. Anything past that is indeed pointless.

_______________________(MY LINE IN THE SAND)_____________________