Blissfully driving down the highway yesterday at higher speeds, all was going smoothly, until Holy Spirit reminded me to look at my speedometer. Whoops! Slow down Mary! I was glad I obeyed, because up ahead was a speed trap; traffic was building up as everyone began hitting the brakes; a few did not notice the trap and were already pulled over by the red flashing lights on the police cars. Thank You Holy Spirit for the warning. At the time I did not realize the lesson I was learning, but it was brought into focus clearly this morning. I’ve been watching kids for a few days, and in my quiet time today, I got a wake up call. After the darlings came sleepily downstairs, I began sensing a ‘spirit of contrary’ flying around. Yet I sensed something deeper behind it, and so I asked Holy Spirit to help me understand. It began with silly stuff of contradictory remarks with each other; then it moved on to obedience issues, as if they wanted to put a lack of obedience in the same ‘silly stuff’ category. So then they can laugh about it, and not do what they are asked to do. After all it’s just a ‘being contrary game’. So thus in their minds it just becomes ‘defiance-lite', or I’m not really doing anything wrong.
But you and I know they are choosing to be uncooperative and disobedient. Down under the surface, they are feeling defiance, but they know they cannot be outright defiant without getting into trouble. So they adopt what they deem a less threatening ‘contrary attitude.’
Then, Holy Spirit pointed the finger at me~ do I do this with God? Do I sometimes not want to be obedient to what He calls me to do? Now I may be too smart to be contrary, but perhaps I just adopt an attitude of compromise.
A small example is my drive yesterday:
I know I must obey governing authorities including those who create speed limits, thus I’m suppose to obey them. Generally speaking, one will usually not get “pulled over” by the police if one's vehicle is going 5 to 7 mph over the limit. BUT the restriction IS a certain speed; unfortunately, at times I do compromise and drive 5mph over it; is that strict obedience to God? Am I being willfully disobedient? Am I compromising? Being contrary? It is, after all, a small thing. Yet the Word says ‘it’s the little foxes that spoil the vine’.
Song of Solomon 2:15 (NKJV)
15 Catch us the foxes,
The little foxes that spoil the vines,
For our vines have tender grapes.
What does this tell me? My compromise may seem like a small thing to me, but to God it is disobedience. If I want to have good fruit flourishing on my vine, I must be mindful of the “little foxes” and obey everything the Lord instructs without compromise. What ‘little thing’ is hard for you to obey? Love your uncooperative neighbor? Hold back a negative response to your spouse’s criticism? Responding to your child rather than reacting? Restraining the tongue and not gossiping?
It seems that we all are probably guilty of compromising on the ‘little foxes’. Flawless behavior is a goal as we grow and desire to please God; after all, He loved us enough to die for our sin debt. We can face the foxes in a love response and choose to purify our behavior of those ‘minor’ sins, and repent of them. The wonderful reward of refining ourselves toward the ideal behavior is a growing, deeper intimacy with our loving Lord.
Do you desire a more intimate relationship with God? Perhaps you too have ‘little foxes’ that need to be faced and removed for a closer walk with our Creator? Purify behavior~ pure obedience~ intimacy.