Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Download MP3 (right click to save)
I remember this one visit to Texas where they got me on a horse. Bet you wish you could have been there! They were there with a camera. See, I was with a group of teenagers doing a radio program, and we decided to do part of it with me on horseback. I'm not sure why, but that was what we did. I had asked for like a nice, gentle horse; a tired old horse. So as I started to mount the horse I said, "By the way, what's his name?" They said, "Tornado." I knew I was in big trouble! I said, "Do you have anything named Glue Factory?" They didn't.
So, I mounted old Tornado, and of course I was full of questions. I was trying to remember how to get him to go the way I wanted him to go (it had been a long time since I'd been on a horse), and I wanted especially how to get Tornado to stop. That was a major thing I needed to know. So, these teenagers are shouting to me, explaining to me what the bit does, the bridle and how that works, and which way to pull the horse so he'll know which way to go. That bit doesn't feel too good when it's pulled to the left or to the right I imagine, so what I concluded was this: Pain turns out to be a pretty effective steering mechanism.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Painful Directions."
Our word for today from the Word of God it's in Psalm 32, and I'll begin reading at verse 8. God says, "I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you." This verse tells us how God wants to direct you. He says, "I will instruct and teach you." His favorite way of getting you to go the right way is to show you in His Word something He'd like for you to do or not do that day. You apply that verse to your situation; you do it His way that day whether it looks like it's the best idea or not.
Then He talks about, "I will counsel you and watch over you." Sometimes He gives you these inner nudges to go the way He wants-those Spirit impulses. He wants you to go the way that's best for you.
Maybe He's been trying to lead you gently to do what He wants, and you haven't been doing it; you've been resisting. You're saying, "You know, I kind of like going this way. I know God may not be thrilled with it, but I think I'm going to do it a little longer." Well, here comes the bit and here comes the bridle. God says, "Okay, then I have to use the bit and the bridle. Aren't you smarter than a horse?"
Well, when gentle doesn't work, God pulls on the reins, the bit digs in and we're hurting. And possibly that might just explain the pain in your life right now. Maybe the question to ask is, "Lord, where have I been ignoring Your gentle leading? Why am I having to feel the bit in my mouth?" It's time you return to the trail that you should be on isn't it? You've been resisting. Guess what? It hurts, and the pain will stop when the obedience begins.
Here's a good rule of life. If you're going to get the pain, get the point. See, God loves you enough to pull on you even if it hurts when you're headed for something that is going to hurt you. Listen to Him. Listen to His Word. Listen to the gentle Spirit impulses on the inside. Do what He's telling you to do.
In other words, don't horse around with God's best. You haven't got time for the pain.