December 30, 2008

 

Spiritual Curfew

Tracie Miles

 

“But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:11-12 (NIV)

Devotion:

I thought my parents were from another planet. As a young teenager, I just didnt understand how they could sit at home on the weekends, which I was sure had been created for the sole purpose of endless socializing. As is the norm for most teens, I was convinced the curfews my parents had set for me were overbearing and pointless. But now I know that although I couldn’t see the benefit of curfews then, my parents knew what was best for me.

 

Have you ever felt like God’s Word has too many “don’ts” and not enough “do’s”? I have heard non-believers say that being a Christian is too rule-oriented, too strict, or simply no fun. At times, this could be the viewpoint of Christians too, who are trying to live a life for Christ but finding it difficult to turn from their old ways.

 

For many years in my Christian life, I played by my own set of rules. I thought that God’s commands were for religious fanatics. However, I now realize that early on, had I adhered to the “spiritual curfews” set out for me in God’s Word, many painful experiences and bad decisions could have been avoided. As it turns out, God knew what was best for me!

 

If you are like I once was, you too may think that some of the biblical guidelines for Christian living are overbearing, maybe even pointless. But consider this: if parents allowed their children to do whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted, with whomever they wanted, is it likely that they would learn right from wrong, take the right paths, and make decisions that are in their best interest? Of course not! Children need guidance, encouragement, discipline and direction from their parents. As children of God, we need those same things from our heavenly Father.

 

Sometimes it is hard to understand why God asks us to think a certain way, do certain things, or refrain from doing other things that are not indicative of someone living for Christ. That is where our faith must come in. Faith is our motivation to abide by the spiritual curfews that God outlines in His Word. If we doubt His reasoning, wonder why certain guidelines matter, or change the real meaning of a scripture to accommodate our own selfish purposes, then we are setting out on a path that will dishonor God and lead to sin.

 

What godly principal are you battling to obey today? I remember my mother telling me to choose my battles, since not every situation was worth fighting for. Living a Godly life is sometimes a battle. This is one battle we should always fight: to honor God’s Word. If we believe the Bible is truth, we should follow its guidelines. In a world where moral values are crumbling around us, Christians need to fight the good fight.

 

Even though God’s Word may sting our hearts at times, and we may feel convicted by the Holy Spirit when we do wrong, let us never forget that God truly does know what is best for us.

 

Dear Lord, Please give me the strength and courage to stand for what is right in Your sight, even if those around me do not agree or understand my beliefs. Help me to fight for what I believe in, and obey Your Word. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Related Resources:

 

Do you know Jesus?

 

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

 

Dear Jesus: Seeking His Light in your Life by Sarah Young

 

Visit Tracies’ blog

 

Application Steps: 

Read Exodus 20:1-20 and Ephesians 5.

 

Reflections: 

Consider any things or behaviors your life that you know do not please God. Pray for strength to fight the battle of breaking that habit so that you can achieve victory over that area of your life. We’d love to pray for you! Click here to let us know how we can.

 

Power Verses:

Hosea 10:12, “Sow for yourselves righteousness, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the Lord, until he comes and showers righteousness on you.” (NIV)

 

Exodus 20:20, “Moses said to the people, ‘Do not be afraid; for God has come in order to test you, and in order that the fear of Him may remain with you, so that you may not sin.’" (NIV)

 

 

 © 2008 by Tracie Miles. All rights reserved.

 

Proverbs 31 Ministries

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