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Monday, September 8, 2008

Sobriety Test

Please Welcome LauraLee Shaw to the Cafe today!

“Direct me in the path of Your commands, for there I find delight.”
Psalm119:35 (NIV)

While driving through the parking lot of my dry cleaners, I noticed a lady who appeared to be walking the painted vertical line in the middle of the lot as if she were taking a sobriety test. I looked around and didn’t see a police officer, so I assumed she was doing it just for fun. I’m sure there are other possibilities, such as practicing for her etiquette class or doing some kind of crazy research, but I’m choosing to believe she was balancing the line just for the sheer delight of it. She DID have a smile on her face after all…

That got my thoughts churning. When was the last time I tried to walk steady on a straight line? And could I physically tiptoe that dotted line in the parking lot without teetering beyond total embarrassment? After all, my balance isn’t what it used to be. Come to think of it, neither is my attention span. How long would I, could I, keep focusing straight ahead before I got bored with it or lost my balance?

The Lord used this analogy to strike a chord in me spiritually. As a Christian, I can sometimes play teeter-totter on the line that was so clear and thrilling before. It’s almost as if I get drunk in the mundane nature of my walk as a believer. In those moments, it’s tempting to take a detour out of sheer restlessness or frustration. While it’s hard to admit, going on a field trip down the world’s muddy path can seem more exciting and more fulfilling—even easier at times----that is, until I hit a brick wall or a mandatory detour that helps me to see in hindsight.

If we are His child, He won’t let us walk the gray line for long, so that seemingly attractive path to the left or the right is always temporary. Acts 2:28 says,

“YOU have made known to me the paths of life;

You will fill me with joy in Your presence.”

Isn’t it amazing how sobering His truth is? We are deceived when we tiptoe any direction that veers off of His “path of life.” In reality, some of our miles will be boring, many will be trying, but in all of them He will give us joy in His presence as we are faithful.

When was the last time you took a sobriety test? Ask the Lord how firmly your feet are planted on His path for your life. Are you wavering on and off, looking for a new thrill (even a small one) now and then? Are you asking Him to fill you with joy as you walk in His presence? We cannot walk the line without His divine help, for we are much too prone to trusting in our own understanding. One step after another, we can willingly place our feet onto the wise path of our Line Leader, the One who drew the line in the first place.

“Father God, I praise You for being a God who directs and leads me in the right way of living, to the path of Your commands. As You are faithful to do this, Lord, I pray that I would be faithful in following. Thank You for making known to me the paths of life and for filling me with joy in Your presence, no matter the circumstance. Help me, through the power of Your Spirit, to find my thrills in You…to replace the temporary ‘highs’ with the High Road. In this direction, Lord, I know I will find TRUE joy and fulfillment. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

In Him,
Laura Lee

LauraLee Shaw resides in Plano, TX with her husband of 18 years and 3 children, Austin (13), AnaLee (10) and Allison (8). Her ministry passions include women’s and kids’ ministry, where she currently serves in leadership at Bent Tree Bible Fellowship in Carrollton, Texas. Laura has been writing devotionals, sketches and poems for over fifteen years and desires to use her gifts to help other believers grow into a more intimate and accountable relationship with their Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ.

Join LauraLee daily at her blogs;

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Blogger Denise said...

Thanks for sharing this, bless you.

September 8, 2008 at 4:37 AM  
Blogger sailorcross said...

Oh, I needed to read this!! How many times do I veer to the left or the right--just a little--and I can hear God saying to me, "No, not that way, over here, over here!"

Walking the straight line is difficult but not impossible. Thank you for putting this thought into my mind today to carry with me throughout my day!


September 8, 2008 at 4:46 AM  
Blogger Homesteader in Training said...

I have a nail and you hit it sister! That's why you're my hero Laura lol.
Great great post my friend.
Blessings to you!

September 8, 2008 at 6:11 AM  
Blogger Patty Wysong said...

Laura, your devotionals always sink in and make me think. Love this analogy and the lesson. So many times I fall off the line, but God is faithful...
Love ya!

September 8, 2008 at 8:04 AM  
Blogger Amy Wyatt said...

What a great analogy. I enjoyed this very much.

September 8, 2008 at 8:51 AM  
Blogger Mae said...

Thanks for sharing this here: some of our miles will be boring, many will be trying, but even so with faith and the guiding we shall overcome.

September 8, 2008 at 9:12 AM  
Blogger Laurie Ann said...

LauraLee....this was awesome! Amen!

September 8, 2008 at 9:40 AM  
Blogger Gina C said...

What a great reminder today as I slooowing slip into "doing my own thing" mode!

September 8, 2008 at 10:08 AM  
Blogger windycindy said...

What a wonderful analogy to draw from the women walking the parking lot line. I love it and what you speak of is so true! Thanks, Cindi

September 8, 2008 at 2:52 PM  
Blogger Gigi said...

What a fantastic post! How many times SHOULD I pray for focus, yet don't...Thank you for the reminder!

September 8, 2008 at 3:49 PM  
Blogger Marsha said...

This was a wonderful analogy! Thanks for sharing this. I love being challenged.

September 8, 2008 at 4:10 PM  
Blogger elaine @ peace for the journey said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

September 8, 2008 at 7:04 PM  
Blogger elaine @ peace for the journey said...

My balance, spiritually speaking, seems to be in good focus these days. It's not by accident but rather through the sheer discipline of keeping to Jesus and his Word. There are always those moments of surprising detour, when the mind (and it almost always starts with the mind) begins a slow slip in one direction or the other. I'm quicker to notice now, but without a constant vigilance toward soul tending, I'm sure to tumble into sin and disobedience.


September 8, 2008 at 7:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really feel the "short attention span" too, it's like there are so many things/people needing attention...

Wonderful words here LauraLee... Thank you!

September 8, 2008 at 11:51 PM  
Blogger lynnmosher said...

Laura Lee, This was a great analogy. I need to be reminded to keep my balance in my walk with the Lord. Thank you. Lynn

September 9, 2008 at 5:37 PM  
Blogger Laury said...

Oh man, Laura. Balance is the thing that I struggle with the most. Thank you for sharing.

September 13, 2008 at 1:12 PM  

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