Thursday, July 30, 2009

Reflections for July 30, 2009

"The Folly of Pigheadedness"

My father-in-law loved to farm. He always planted a big garden and raised enough meat for the family table. He used an electric fence to keep his pigs contained. One pig he owned refused to be confined by the fence. He had been bitten so many times by the fence that he came to the point he would run through it. He would get back from the fence, paw the ground, squeal loudly, and charge. He knew he was going to be shocked but his desire to escape became greater than his fear of the pain. He would run full speed into the fence squealing all the way. When he was on the other side he would usually head to the neighbors yard to destroy the lawn.

The electric fence was not there to torture the pig. It was there to provide a place of safety, where he would have access to all he needed and would be free from the dangers of traffic and the neighbor’s gun. Apparently, the pig was not smart enough to realize this. He saw the fence as an infringement on his desire to roam. He chose the inevitable pain from the fence over the comfort of remaining within the boundaries set by his owner.

Many people are like this pig. I guess you could say they are pig headed. While they are aware of the boundaries God has placed on their lives, they do not seem to understand God’s reasons for placing them there. They see them as hindrances to the happiness they seek. They believe they drain all the fun out of life. Of course, this thinking is wrong. God’s boundaries are not to deny us the joys of living but to protect us from the accesses within our hearts. So much of the pain people suffer is directly the result of their own or someone else’s refusal to live within God’s boundaries.

What we do not seem to understand is that there is no safer place than within the boundaries God has given. To live outside them, makes us vulnerable to the pain the world has to offer. To live within them gives us a place of security and comfort in good times and in bad. To live within His boundaries gives us access to a peace that baffles those who live on the other side of God’s boundaries.

Each one of us must decide whether we want to live within God’s boundaries, which God has provided for our provision and protection, or we can paw the ground, squeal loudly, and, like my father-in-law’s pig, charge through God’s boundaries and live our life outside His provision and protection. The ladder my bring momentary pleasure and satisfaction but in the long run it will leave us confused, frustrated, and scared by the unforgiving nature of the world.

If you have chosen in the past to be pigheaded, there is good news for you. God is aware of your situation and He is willing to forgive you and allow you once again to find a peace that surpasses understanding living life within the boundaries He has set for His children. All that is required is a repentant heart and a sincere desire to have the joy of your salvation restored.

The choice before us each day is not complicated. We can either be pigheaded or we can commit our lives to being God-centered. One always leads to disappointment and the other leads to fulfillment. Which choice do you choose to make today?

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