So we must be more careful to follow what we were taught… so that we will not be pulled away from the true way.
I take the exact same route to dialysis and back home three times a week – so often, in fact, that my Ford Fiesta knows the way. No, I don’t have a self-driving vehicle (yet), but it can sure seem that way. During the ride, my mind goes to another place, while my body is on autopilot. Sometimes, I “come to” and am not sure for a frightening second where I am, because I haven’t been paying attention, I don’t immediately recognize the stretch of road, and I absolutely can’t remember the turns and stops and lights I’ve passed.
This verse speaks to me of this experience, but it’s my whole pattern of living that can frequently become like that routine trip. Intentionality – my living in the now – slips away; it’s not so much pulled away. It just wanders off when I don’t purposefully focus. I repeatedly work hard to establish a good daily routine, but as soon as I “settle in” to it, complacency follows and the slide begins. Somehow, I cease to be fully aware of every moment.
Today, God spoke to me of this “habitualizing” in my devotionals and in Hebrews 2, which was ‘coincidentally’ next up in my trek through the New Testament. Except, I don’t believe in coincidence.
“[Jesus] knows that left to my own self-centered ways, I will destroy myself. It is just what we humans do.”
(S.F. Aughtmon, Mornings with Jesus)
“The pursuit of normal is like chasing the wind. The moment you are sure you have settled into the fleeting comfort that comes with normalcy, a… ‘new normal’ [is revealed].”
(S. Rodriguez, Be Light, excerpt in Men of Integrity)
The key message came next:
“People of the light must resist the ‘normal’ and aspire to the extra-ordinary, the transformational.”
“Be more careful to follow“. Not patterns. Habits. Routines. Same old, same old. How do I stay in the moment? How do I keep conscious of every minute of living? “Living one day at a time; enjoying one moment at a time?”
God – the one who made all things and for whose glory all things exist – wanted many people to be his children and share his glory. So he did what he needed to. He made perfect the one who leads those people to salvation. He made Jesus a perfect savior though his suffering.
It seems I’ll be working on this. Beginning right now, as I make my way out to the car for that routine drive.