Thursday, July 9, 2015

Ignoring Danger Signs

Galatians 5:19-21 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

My wife and I spent a week in the San Francisco Bay area while I was co-teaching a class at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary. We had one free day so we drove north of the city along some fabulous scenic roads and past lots of amazing beaches. One beach was particularly breathtaking with numerous unique rock formations and the Russian River all converging around the beach.

There were signs posted all over the beach saying that it was the most dangerous beach in California. The signs went on to explain that many people die there every year because of the difficult currents and rocks. Yet, as we viewed the waves crashing on the rocks, a group of young adult men put on their wetsuits and took their surfboards out into the water. Closer to the shore a number of children were playing in the water just like it was a family swimming pool. Did any of them even notices the signs posted that warned them how dangerous the surf was in that particular spot? There were plenty of other beaches. Why did they feel compelled to swim in that one? Yes, it look really cool, but it was also really dangerous!

It occurred to me after reflecting on that experience that it is a lot like how we often deal with the dangerous areas of our lives. We all have rough spots that we know we need to work on and that can cause us real damage if left unattended. Yet, we often go through our lives ignoring all the danger signs and pretending everything will be just fine so long as we get to do whatever we want to do. And on the surface, all looks fine to those who are looking at our lives. But just under the surface there are rocks that we will crash into if we continue playing in the dangerous water. It is not a matter of if, but of when. We will crash and it will be extremely hurtful, perhaps even catastrophic. Yet, like those young men with surfboards, we ignore the warning signs and jump right in.

Lord, help us to read the warning signs You give us and change our ways before we crash into the hard rocks of this world. Amen.


Dr. Terry W. Dorsett has been a pastor, church planter, denominational leader and author in New England for more than 20 years. He is a happy husband, a proud father and adoring grandfather. He is a cancer survivor and believes that God works powerfully through times of suffering. He writes extensively and you can find all of his books at:


  1. Very timely.

  2. Amen! How true. I find myself, even, failing to heed the signs that God posts around me to warn me of the dangerous rocks. There are some who have shipwrecked their faith because they failed to pay more careful attention. God forgive me when I have failed to heed.

    1. Thanks for sharing and yes, we all struggle to see the signs