The Consequences Are Certain

Daily Bible CoverI've been trying to put myself into a newbie (i.e. "beginner") mindset as I read through the Bible this year. Honestly, it's not that difficult for me to do as this is the first time I've read through the Bible in chronological order. But I'm sure the noob (i.e. "beginner") would by now be saying to themselves, "Ok, certainly this is the point that God throws up his hands, shouts 'I QUIT' and storms off into the heavens." I mean, how many times can God watch generation after generation after generation fall into the same temptations, repeat the same sins, chase the same false idols and commit the same mistakes? It's something I have rarely thought about until this year as I read through the Bible, and now it's virtually all I think about. How does God do it? And more importantly, WHY does God do it?

Well, those questions are not for today's reading to explore. Today we get an all too familiar story. God blesses his people. People ignore God in the midst of power struggles, murder and complete chaos. God punishes people. Shiny, happy people. Not so much holding hands. (A little R.E.M 90's shout out if you didn't get the reference.)

There a line in the built-in commentary that beautifully sums up this 2 Kings/2 Chron. mash-up that I don't want to miss repeating. It says "The consequences are certain, even if sometimes delayed." I read that and was convicted of all the little things that I continue to struggle with. That whole "be kind one to another" bit. The part about "love your wife as God loves the church." The ditty that goes something like "be quick to listen, slow to become angry, and shut your mouth already." Those, and about a dozen other gems that I'm constantly fighting in my life all of a sudden mounted an emotional assault and sucker punched me right in the gut.

The consequences are certain.

Yet as I roll through another week, have I treated my stumbles with the fact that if left unchecked, even if life was cruising along on top of my sinful natures, there would be punishment eventually waiting for me?

I'm willing to bet that if all of us saw what was in fact waiting for us right around the corner, we would probably stop skipping towards it acting like we don't have a care in the world. Because that's essential what our society is doing as we continue to push God and His commandments further and further down the list of priorities.

The consequences are certain.

I don't want to skip through this next week, sliding by unforgiven or unrepentant. My day should be filled with constant reminders of the God that created me. Unworthy of His attention. Undeserving of his love. A sinner walking. Redeemed only by His grace.

True, the consequences are certain. But on the other side of the coin, eternal life is promised. It's my choice, today, to decide which side I'll call.