Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don’t act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like.” James 1:24
Well, it just made me laugh. At least for me the internet is a love, hate relationship. There is so much good stuff out there but if you are older than two, you know there is a ton of junk too. So, you learn to tread carefully and get the good stuff and avoid the bad like the black plague. And, if you happen to stumble into something that is poisonous, run, don’t walk to the nearest exit. On the other side of the coin, when you find something good, apply it and share it.
Every day I receive probably five or six devotionals in my email. The good news is they are always safe reading. The better news is that often they are more and this week I got something that was more. It told a story that goes like this. “A drunken husband snuck up the stairs quietly one evening as his wife James 1:24was sleeping. He looked in the bathroom mirror and discovered he had several bumps and bruises from a fight earlier that night. He doctored himself up and then proceeded to climb into bed smiling at the thought that he had pulled one over on his sleeping wife.”
“When morning came, he opened his eyes and there stood his obviously unhappy wife. While glaring, she said, “You were drunk last night, weren’t you?” The husband said, “No honey…I wasn’t.” “Well,” she replied, “if you weren’t, then who put all the Band-Aids on the bathroom mirror?” Boom. Gotcha. I hope that made you smile because it sure did me. And as a writer of the blogs and a teacher, I realized this story is just stuffed with truths and lessons for us to learn. As an example, I wonder how he expected to explain the Band-Aids that were supposed to be on his face…let alone the ones that ended up on the bathroom mirror. The marks and scars of our misguided steps will always tell a story. There’s a verse in the Old Testament that says we can be sure our sins will find us out. How true.
Another great lesson from our story teaches us that we should play close attention when we look in the mirror. In this case since the husband was drunk…well, he was also clueless. What is amazing to me are the times when we are stone sober and take a look in the mirror, see something that isn’t right and still walk away leaving whatever it was intact and in place. There’s a verse for that one too. James, the half-brother of Jesus, says that when we know what to do and don’t do it, we are like a person who looks in a mirror, sees that something is awry and chooses to just walk away. Remember it is better to take care of the problem and yes, it is better to not only read and discover what to do…but then…do it. An ounce of prevention is indeed better than a pound of cure.
Oh, and then there is the lesson about self-fixing. The man saw the mess and tried to fix it up himself. How many times have we tried that…and failed miserably. One of the lessons I have learned through the years is that while self-fixing is sometimes admirable, it can never do what only God can do. There are plenty of mishaps and messes in life that we need the help of Someone bigger than us. Enter a God who loves us so much. Enter a God that loves us too much to leave us alone…like we are. He is in more than the fix-it-up business…He is in the rescue; redeem and resurrect business and He can’t wait to be a part of your life.
Well, I reckon we can’t leave this story without stating the obvious. And what is that? The dude shouldn’t have been drunk in the first place! Whether he was seeking an escape or just stopped by the bar and stumbled into a mess… neither matters. Remember, mess with a snake and you will eventually get bit…it is just how it goes. But regardless, accidental, or intentional, God is there not to lecture but to redeem…not to point a finger but to point the way to your rescue. No matter what…He’s got this. Bro. Dewayne