Imagine a scenario when one of your children turns 16 and you buy them a new car. When you turn over the keys you say, I just have a few rules I want you to follow:
· Don’t text and drive
· Don’t drink and drive
· Don’t have more than 3 friends in the car at one time
· Don’t exceed the speed limit
All of these rules seem logical, after all, they are to protect your child.
After a couple weeks, you are coming home from work driving in the right lane when a car full of teen-agers goes flying by you like you’re standing still. The driver doesn’t notice you, but you are fairly sure it’s your son. You want to be certain, so you speed up to get a closer look. It isn’t easy, but you manage to catch up and see it is your son, and you see why he didn’t notice you; his eyes are going back and forth from his phone to the road. You decide, “I am going to let this slide, maybe it was a moment of weakness.” A few days later the same thing happens, and you are even receiving calls from neighbors witnessing the same thing. You sit your son down to discuss it. You explain that these rules are for his protection. He assures you he will change his ways, but over the next few weeks it is pretty clear nothing has changed. So, you meet him in the driveway as he pulls in, but this time he also has alcohol on his breath. After you take his keys he storms into the house yelling how much he hates you, how unfair you are, and then he tells all of his friends how his did is the worst dad in the world.
We might look at this scenario and have a few conclusions. The kid is a spoiled brat. The kid doesn’t understand that dad was trying to protect him, but he’ll figure it out some day. Dad should shut off his phone since the kid showed no remorse or even apologize for being disobedient. Dad should kick him out of the house to wake him up to real life.
We see in Ezekiel 36 that God blessed the people of Israel. But instead of being thankful and obedient to God, their ways and their deeds were wicked, and they worshipped idols. On top of that, when, in God’s Wrath, He took their land and scattered them throughout the nations, the people “profaned His Name”.
We may read about “the kid with the car” and “the people of Israel” and think, “how stupid can you be”. But hold on. Haven’t we done the exact same thing?
God has blessed us all – yet don’t we chase after idols and act wickedly? We have lied when He has told us not to lie. We have fornicated when God has said sex is only to be within the covenant of marriage. We chase after idols like money, career, fitness, hobbies, sports, and social media and give God the leftovers, if we give Him any time at all. We have profaned His Name by using it irreverently, or even as a curse word. WE ARE THE SPOILED KID! What should God do? Is your answer the same as it was as your response to the kid with the car?
If you read this and have thought, “Wow! That is me, I am the spoiled kid, what must I do?” – praise God for opening your eyes. The reality is, not all eyes are open to this Truth. Of all God’s blessings, falling under the conviction of the Holy Spirit because of your sin against God ranks at the top. (I will address the ”what must I do?” in the next post).
God bless you all!