Jim Burns Homeword Daily Devotional for Parenting and Christian Family

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HomeWord - May 30, 2007

Orange Cone Alert 
This devotional was written by Leslie Snyder

There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death.— Proverbs 14:12

Road construction.  Everyone wants its benefits, but no one wants its hassles.  Road construction means slow traffic, inconvenient detours, extra travel time and hot tempers.  Drivers will do most anything to avoid traveling in the orange cone zone.  Our city even posts “orange cone alerts” on the morning rush hour broadcast in order to allow drivers the opportunity to choose another route to work.  What baffles me is that even with all of the road signs and warnings, drivers continue to travel the same route day after day expecting something different, and then getting frustrated when it’s not!

Our spiritual life is much the same way.  No one wants to stay in the same lane of traffic he or she began in.  We really do want the benefits of a soul under construction.  Slow traffic, inconvenient detours, extra travel time, and hot tempers are as much a part of the spiritual journey as they are a part of daily road construction.  In fact, if we’re honest, they bring about the same level of personal frustration. 

Growth takes time.  So does healing. As does maturity, forgiveness, restoration and reconciliation.  Sure, a quick fix looks good, but only on the surface.  Much like a pothole that road crews gave the “token fill.”  It works for a while, but one unlucky driver will pay the consequences of a job that only fixed the surface. 

A road under construction takes time and attention; so does the soul. Church attendance, prayers, Bible reading and even serving in ministry, when not allowed to penetrate deep into our hearts to touch our souls, only makes the surface of our lives look good.  Soul work requires hard labor, critical examination of one’s life, ruthless scrutiny of one’s decisions and integrity, not to mention deep wells of grace, and rich gifts of forgiveness. This work takes perseverance and discipline, yet the payoff for a well-constructed soul is worth the effort!

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1. How is the construction of your soul progressing? Take time to evaluate today.

2. Honest soul work is difficult and is likely to bring about the occasional detours, roadblocks and potholes of personal pain, confrontations and exposure of sin.  But the end result of a soul set free is worth the work.  Commit today to persevering through the tough moments of soul-building.


Matthew 10:28; 1 Peter 2:11; 1 Peter 1:8-9

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