“Now then, my children, listen to me; blessed are those who keep my ways. Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not disregard it. Proverbs 8:32-33
This morning I got a flat tire on my way from the gym. The flat tire was not unexpected. For the past several weeks, the car has been warning about low tire pressure. I kept on putting air in the tires, thinking that air was all that was needed. However, the warning light never went away. From my perspective, the tires looked in good shape. So, I dismissed the urgency of the warning and kept on driving the car. Finally, my imprudence caught up with me and one of the tires had a hole in it.
While thinking about the tire, the Holy Spirit reminded me how believers do the same things with their spiritual lives. We often get warnings from God when we are spiritually dysfunctional. Like the tires on a car, we leak spiritually; and sometimes we have big holes in our spiritual walk that must be addressed immediately. But because of the busyness of life and disobedient spirits, we often disregard the warnings and assume that keeping up with our religious rituals is good enough to keep our spiritual wheels turning.
In today’s text, believers are exhorted to listen to God’s instructions and be wise. That’s what I failed to do with the tires. I disregarded the warnings which clearly said something was wrong with the tire pressure. My morning rituals were completely disturbed because I did not heed the warnings. Luckily, the gym was not too far from my house, and I was able to replace the tire without any issues. But what if I did not have a spare, or the tools necessary to replace the tire? You see, I never checked if there were the required tools to replace a tire in the back of the car. I just assumed they were in the trunk.
Spiritual wisdom comes from preparation and not reparation. We must ask the Holy Spirit to examine our lives daily and reveal to us areas of sins that need to be addressed right away, and not wait until we make a major mistake because we disregarded the warnings from the Lord. A few weeks ago, I read an article about a man who has been married for twenty years with four kids describing how he is struggling to remain faithful to his wife because of his attraction to a female co-worker. He talked about his desire to go out drinking with that co-worker despite his lust for her. Someone responded to his statement and told him how foolish he was for jeopardizing twenty years of marriage, and possibly upending the life of his children for a few moments of pleasure with a co-worker.
Sin or moral failures do not sneak up on us. There are usually warning signs from the Holy Spirit whenever we are exposed to sin or a moral failure. It is when we disregard the warnings that we transgress against God and potentially create chaos in our lives. The tire issue did not sneak up on me. There were warning signs. But if we listen to God’s instructions, we can resist temptations and avoid spiritual and moral failures.
In the Old Testament, David ended up killing Uriah so he can cover up his adulterous affair with Bathsheba. When he saw Bathsheba showering, he should have walked away and not indulged his lust for a married woman. Whenever we find ourselves indulging in a sinful thought or desire, we must pray for the spiritual strength to walk away. 1 Corinthians 10:13 tells us, “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” Unfortunately, many believers choose not to use the way out provided by God.
Questions for Personal Reflection
What do you do when the Holy Spirit warns you about a situation or relationship that may lead to sin?
Who holds you accountable when you do not heed the warnings from the Holy Spirit?
Prayer- Blessed Lord, I thank you for the warning signs you give me when I get too close to sinful situations. Please help me to listen to your instructions and not disregard the admonition of the Holy Spirit.