DayBreaks for 5/28/20: The Flight to Imprisonment
From the DayBreaks archive, May 2010:
The Associated Press recently had a story about an incident in Cleveland, Ohio. A man driving a car broke a traffic law and the police set off in pursuit to give him a ticket. Instead of pulling over, the man did his best to escape (never a smart idea when the police are after you!) After a chase through several communities that reaching speeds of over 90 miles per hour, he realized he wasn’t having success outrunning the police, so he decided to abandon his car and take his chances on foot. He took off running, with officers again running after him. The man found himself confronted with a large fence, which he scaled and came down on the other side, thinking that perhaps now he’d be safe from the pursuing officers. Imagine his dismay when he looked around and realized that the fence he’d scaled was the outer fence of the state women’s prison! He was arrested.
I love stories like this because I like a good laugh. But most stories have a moral to them if we look, and this one contains a deeper spiritual truth if we take a few moments to think about it. It is often the knowledge of our own wrongdoing that makes us prone to run and this is never more true than when we sense that someone is authority is about to find out about what we’ve done, whether it is police, the boss, the pastor, teachers, etc. And so we take flight. We think we can flee the thing we’ve done, that we can escape the consequences, but often times it is our efforts to gain freedom and escape that leads to the very imprisonment and loss of freedom that we try to find. Our imprisonment may not be literal, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t true imprisonment. It may be the prison of guilt, of consequences that must be suffered, of self-exile.
That is probably not the worst thing about the imprisonment, however. For those who have a Christian understanding, the worst tragedy and greater sadness about our running is that the authority that is over us desires to forgive and restore – not to enslave us.
If we are to run when pursued by God, let us run to Him, not from Him!
PRAYER: Father, we thank You for the Spirit that convicts us of our sin and which helps to keep us honest. Remind us that it is Your desire to seek and save, not to judge and destroy. May we have the presence of mind and Spirit that we will run to you and find forgiveness when we sin. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright by 2020 by Galen C. Dalrymple. ><}}}”>