Wednesday, August 10, 2011
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One severe weather system behind us, another one coming. Yeah, well, that's like spring living in Tornado Alley. Uh-huh... You know, I can look at our children and know that they are going to have, when those warnings go up, probably young children in bed with them before the night is over. And I can probably count on the fact that l will be waking up during the night to the annoying alarm on our weather radio and that robotic voice of NOAA radio. But that's OK. There's a reason all those weather guys strongly urge you to have one of those life-saving radios. And why I strongly urge me to respond when the warning comes!
I remember watching the video in the spring of a North Carolina home supply store during a huge tornado. And that store got totally, I guess you could say, remodeled by that tornado. And even though there were an estimated 100 people in that store, amazingly no one was seriously injured. The reason: well, in one frantic minute, the store manager gave the warning and everyone rushed to the safest spot in the store...because of a warning and a quick response.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Storm Warning In Your Soul."
You know, I thank God for a warning—even those annoying ones—when a dangerous storm's about to hit. No, not just a warning from the weather radio. I'm talking about the alarm in my soul, because I'm in the path of danger that I can't see.
The Holy Spirit. That's what the Bible calls my "internal warning system." Our word for today from the word of God talks about that in John 16:8, and it says that when Jesus left for heaven, He sent the Holy Spirit to live inside all of us who belong to Him. Why? Well, here's His mission: to "convict the world of its sin, and of God's righteousness, and of the coming judgment." Now, because sin is inevitably followed by storms that break things you treasure and tear up your world, God wants you to be warned. And He accomplishes that warning system by the stirring in your heart of the Holy Spirit who says, "Don't do that. That's wrong. Turn back!" As the wife of an adulterously disgraced politician said recently, "You can pick your sin. You can't pick your consequences."
The alarm goes off in your soul when you lie, when you speak hurtfully either to their face or maybe behind their back. The alarm goes off when you look at a man or woman with lust in your heart; when you store bitterness in your heart; when you dump your anger on someone and leave scars behind. Actually, the internal Holy Spirit sirens go off whenever we step out of the Light and into the darkness. And I'm wise to wake up right away and get to where it's safe; doing what God blesses instead of what God judges.
Oh, you can disregard the warning of God inside. And you can do it so many times that you barely hear it anymore. But God has this warning: "quench not the Spirit" (1 Thessalonians 5:19). Oh, you can ignore the alarm, but you can't stop the storm.
So when I have stepped into the path of danger, God's alarm goes off inside me to warn me to get to safety, which means running from the wrong and running back to God's way.