DayBreaks for 12/30/11 – When Danger Is Remote
Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. 9 Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are. – 1 Peter 5:8-9
Danger has a way of prompting us to be alert and take action, whether the danger is real, or just frighteningly potential. Consider this story, told by Mickey Anders, in Keeping Watch:
“Folks back in Arkansas have always been fascinated by the New Madrid Fault, which runs along a line from Memphis up through southern Missouri. Back at the turn of the century, that area suffered one of the biggest earthquakes to ever hit North America. In fact, the Mississippi River ran upstream for several hours.
“In the fall of 1990, a scientist predicted that another major earthquake would occur in the New Madrid Fault on Tuesday, December 4. His prediction gathered a lot of attention in newscasts, public assemblies and private conversations. People stowed away precious possessions, stockpiled groceries and kerosene, and learned how to shut off their gas and water lines. Schools and businesses announced that they would be closed that week and several residents temporarily left the area. On December 2, 1990, the First Sunday in Advent and two days before the predicted quake, churches were packed. Many people stayed awake all night on December 3. But December 4, 1990, passed with no tremor. Then December passed, and the winter. Flashlight batteries drained. Extra food spoiled or was consumed. Fuel tanks sat empty once more. The earthquake is still predicted to happen one day. When a crisis seems imminent, we have no trouble keeping alert and awake. But when the threat of danger seems remote, our eyelids grow heavy and we sleep.”
Have you seen the “great enemy”, the devil, the roaring lion today? Is he hot on your tail? Oh, if it were only so simple! The roaring lion can roar, but he can also be silent and stealthy, sneaking up on us in ways that lull us to sleepiness…and then when it is too late we realize he has us right where he wants us, between his jaws.
Where is the greatest danger in your life coming from right now? Is it an attitude of lax morality? A cavalier attitude toward the poor and needy? From listening to the ideas of man instead of the promises of God? God’s advice to us, through the pen of Peter, is simply this: Stay alert! Watch out!
Don’t let your guard down or you may find yourself in the lion’s belly before you even knew you were in danger!
PRAYER: Father, don’t let our eyes grow dull and heavy because we think danger if far from us! Let us not think we are strong and can stand, for it is surely at those moments that we are most likely to overtaken by our great enemy! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2011 by Galen C. Dalrymple.
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