Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Engine LIght

(Proverbs 3:6)  “In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

I had just bought a later model used car. On a trip to Indiana for Thanksgiving, the amber “engine light” came on. I had been used to driving older cars, so this was a new experience to me.

This amber “engine light”, differs from vehicle to vehicle, but promises customers a safer and better driving experience, and helps to address problems earlier, and more efficiently for a broad range of problems. For this reason sometimes repair facilities struggle more to find solutions.

That particular Thanksgiving, I spent most of the day at the dealership, only to discover that the computer itself had incorrectly turned the light on. The manufacturer paid the bill.

The conversations that I had with several people while waiting, helped me to realize that my own spiritual “engine light” was on, and God was taking my life a new direction.

The working of God’s spirit can sometimes be like an “engine light” in our lives. Jesus experienced this when a woman touched the hem of his garment, and he felt power drain from his spirit. We are all spirits, who happen to have bodies, and they can be directed towards evil or good.

I was being introduced to this as a “new dimension” in the Christian life.

For example, I was surprised recently to see that the Bible says that a person of great wrath also has great confidence. Confidence alone, then, does not guarantee that you are operating according to God’s ways. (Proverbs 14:16) In other words, things can appear well without any indication of anything being wrong – but it is helpful to know that there are times when this may be the case.

God is holy, and will always be angry at sin. But the beauty of walking close to the Lord, is that you can learn to recognize his “slightest whisper”!

The root cause of all suffering on earth is the problem of sin. Since sin has been dealt with at the cross of Jesus Christ, what is left is a restored relationship with the Heavenly Father. Faith is what brings this about. But since sin is at the core of our entire human existence, outside of the cross, and the operation of grace necessary for all aspects of this new life, it is becomes a daily challenge!

Fortunately, our pain during these times becomes a picture of what a vehicle is supposed to be like, and attracts more assistance. Our pain draws the Savior!

As I write this, even our little Shitzu dog decided that it was time to get some exercise. I had not done this since yesterday morning. She actually seemed quite vicious as she was playing with me.

How do we know what is happening? We simply develop a regular routine for “checking in with Him”, so as to keep the “engine light” functioning appropriately.

I saw a few fascinating verses in scripture recently that underline this truth for me. The Lord knows what is going on. (2 Peter 2:9) In fact he can be recognized by what He evaluates in our lives, and the lives of those who walk away from Him. (Psalm 9:16).

The thing left, then, is to live our lives from these “roots” upwards and away from things that are dangerous to our “vehicle” – away from the contamination that addressed our lives early on, and from the time when they first began to influence our hearts away from Him.

All we have to do is to . . . acknowledge Him!

I needed to say it in that automobile dealership that day, and I also needed to say it to myself this morning, “Paul, in all of your ways make sure that you make His ways known, in what you acknowledge, and what you do, and he will act as director of your paths, and make them straight!

Is your “engine light” on?  (1) If it is giving out false information – take it the “Manufacturer”, and get it replaced with the “Word of God”; (2) If it is correct, align your life accordingly; (3) If someone else needs your understanding, share with them. (1 Peter 3:15)

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