Devotions By Jan

Thorns

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IMG_20130510_142028Scripture for Today:  Proverbs 22:5  “Thorns and snares are in the way of the perverse; He who guards himself will be far from them.”

I saw this thorny cactus right in the middle of a sidewalk in Fort Worth, Texas.  I guess the home owners there are not too enthusiastic to have people walking by their place!  Having those prominent thorn-like spines was a good way to discourage people from parking there as well!  We parked and walked by even so, but very carefully!

The southwest section of the States has some beautiful cacti with colorful flowers.  The tallest cactus on record is 63 feet and the smallest is .4 inches.   Their spines, like thorns, differ according to the variety.  But they all have one thing in common.  They prick one’s skin.

Our verse for today is a warning.  Those who do not follow God’s laws are at risk to hurt themselves.  It is as if they are running headlong into a cactus.  Their behavior may seem reasonable and even pleasant.  But in fact, the way of those that pervert God’s laws leads to pain.  Rather than see this verse as negative, I see it as a loving warning to spare us unnecessary pain.

So often, the Bible is viewed as  a list of restrictive rules.  In the name of “freedom” one throws off what is considered archaic and old-fashioned.  We feel we are more advanced and enlightened in our day.  Then we are surprised at the pain resulting from our choices in life.  We have disregarded God’s way and instead have embraced a way full of thorns and snares.

I am to guard myself from taking that disobedient path.  That means those thorns and snares are not always so obvious.  Lord, lead me in those pleasant paths of righteousness.

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