“As I’ve mentioned more than once,” Stan commented one morning, “I think the apostle Paul was gifted by God to say a whole lot in a few words. I ran across another great one-line zinger from him earlier this morning.”
“What was that?” I asked.
“In his letter to the church in Galatia,” Stan replied, “the apostle Paul asked a single question that has a huge impact on my faith walk.”
“How,” I asked, “can something written a long time ago to some people far from here have any impact on your faith walk today?”
“People are people; their basics don’t change much,” Stan said. “The Bible is called the living word because what was important in the lives of people back in Paul’s day is still important in my life today. If, and I repeat, if I will listen and apply it to my life and faith walk it will make a difference!”
“Okay,” I replied. “So what was Paul’s one-line zinger that got your attention?”
“He simply asked,” Stan said, “who had hindered them, meaning the Galatians, from obeying the truth?”
“Who had hindered them from obeying the truth,” I repeated. “Great question!”
“Great question for then,” Stan said, “and a great question for me just about every hour of every day of my life. And I usually see the answer looking back at me when I look in the mirror.”
“You hinder yourself?” I asked.
“If I’m honest,” Stan replied. “Oh, I can try to blame my circumstances, or I can play the blame-game by trying to put my disobedience as the fault of other people, but God knows that most if not all of my disobedience is the result of my choice.”
“Your choice? But aren’t there times when you really don’t have a choice?”
“I always have a choice.” Stan said emphatically. “It’s just a matter of choosing.”
“And if you make the wrong choice, then what?”
“What do you think?” Stan asked.
“How about confession and repentance?”
“Good choice!” Stan replied with a smile.
Bible verses to consider:
You were running well; who hindered you from obeying the truth? Galatians 5:7
. . . As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. Joshua 24 15.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith. 2 Timothy 4:7.
If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. John 14:15.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for providing all I need to obey you and the truth. I confess that too often the one who hinders me from obeying the truth is me. I do that because I choose to not obey. Please forgive that foolish approach to living the life of obedience you intend for me. Please, Father, help me to follow every step of your lead into obeying all you have for me to obey as I live this life you have given me to live for you. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Have you accepted the truth of salvation and redemption through the cross of Christ? If no, why have you not accepted that free and gracious gift? If you do have the assurance of knowing you will spend eternity in God’s presence when it’s time, how are you doing in not being hindered in obeying the truth on this side of eternity? If you are being hindered, who is doing the hindering? If you sense the need for change in obeying the truth, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?