Thursday, March 11, 2010

Stung

I got stung by a bee at a youth retreat. Go ahead and laugh that I would begin this entry with the very interesting fact that I once got stung by a bee. God knows that sometimes a little pain is necessary to get our attention! Let me mention here, I HATE pain! I have no threshold for it! I will do about anything to avoid feeling any physical pain.
Immediately, after being stung the group broke out for a thirty minute "alone" time with God in the woods, alone with about one hundred bees surrounding us at any given time.
Can I just tell you what was going through my mind, "Are you serious! You want me to stay out here in these bee infested woods and try to concentrate on God!"
I want to also mention, this was my first "official" quiet time with God. Needless to say, the Lord had a powerful analogy for me and wanted to get my attention. I had only been a follower of Christ for about four months. I had just graduated from college and jumped right into service by volunteering with Young Life. I had no idea what I was getting into.
Sitting against a tree in the woods for 25 minutes with nothing on my minds but the "bees" surrounding me (funny how you notice them once you've been stung) and the throbbing pain in my arm. A gentle voice spoke, "The intentional sin in your life is like the bees you are so focused on this afternoon. Because of the sin and the painful consequences that go along with the life you are choosing to lead you can not see me working nor hear me speak. Your intentional sin is what is distracting you and causing you pain." "Get your focus off of the sin and unto to me. " "Choose to do right"
I walked in the ways of the world and reaped the painful consequences. It was the painful consequences that eventually led me to Him. I did not completely walk away from some sins thinking they were too big to fully break from. I continued to walk in the ways of the world even after committing my life to the Lord. This was His wake up call, a call out of my life of sin and into a life redeemed by Him, the only one who can change us from the inside out.
I want to remember this intimate moment with my Savior. I want to remember the pit from which He has pulled me.
I am a woman who is Redeemed, Ransomed and Restored!
Is there a sin in your life that is distracting you and keeping you from experiencing freedom in Christ? Is there a sin you are holding onto? Are you reaping the painful consequences of intentional sin? I know how hard it can be to let go of sin. I know the tough decisions that have to be made to turn away from it. I know how hard it is to not be focused on your past life and the sins of your youth but let me tell you what I have experienced. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt, the Lord is gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love. I know the intimacy that comes with a redeemed life. I know in our times of brokenness His love is more than enough to sooth our wounds and restore our soul.
It is my prayer, you will return to the Lord and lay your burdens at the foot of the cross. He desires for you to be free from sin.

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 15:55-56

This is a re-post written in 2009

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