Monday, December 1, 2014

Following Instructions

Psalm 111:10 - The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow His instructions have good insight. His praise endures forever.

Once I helped a friend assemble a movie display at a theater. This was not a simple display where he and I could just open the box and put the display on the wall. It was a complicated display that was nearly as tall as I am and twice as long. It had very complicated instructions.

We spent three hours inserting Tab A into Slot B while attaching Strap C to Holder D. It was obvious that whoever designed the display was a brilliant engineer with a flair for thinking of ways to make cardboard look like a whole city block. But the designer clearly did not know how to write instructions in plain English that non-engineers could understand. It took quite a while to figure out the difference between Tab A and Tab J and Holder D and Holder Z. But piece by piece we assembled the display. Following the directions exactly, one step at a time, we finally got the project done. It looked amazing when it was finished.

Life is a lot like building a complicated display. We do not just take life out of a box and instantly have good marriages, healthy families, meaningful careers, or vibrant spirituality. In order to make life work, a lot of things have to be done in the correct order and at the right time. We need a set of directions for how to get through life. If we skip a step in those instructions, or try to take a short cut, life ends up lopsided.

Fortunately, there is a set of instructions for life. It is called the Bible. Many people think the Bible is out of date and no longer relevant to our post-modern culture. They clearly have not read the Bible carefully. The stories in the Bible reveal people dealing with many of the very same problems that we hear about daily. In the Bible we can find stories of people facing financial issues, family problems, war, crime, and corrupt governments. We can find stories of believers making right choices, as well as believers making terrible choices. The Bible is full of stories about how people dealt with real life issues. It also contains a lot of helpful advice about how we can deal with our own issues. Though life is complicated, if we follow the instructions God gave us, like the movie display my friend and I assembled, life can end up looking good when we get to the end.

Lord, help us to study the Bible more and follow Your directions for life. Amen.

This post is an excerpt from the book, The Heavenly Mundane: Daily Devotions from Ordinary Experiences. Filled with stories of how God spoke in big ways through small events, the book will encourage people to look for God in the mundane things of life. Great for both personal use and to give as a gift to friend, either the print version or the e-book version may be purchased at this link:

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