Boundaries

Bad Dog, No Biscuit

My sweet dog, Lexi is now over 4 years old.  She weighs 7 pounds and LOVES to snuggle.  She is the epitome of a lap dog.  She is everyone’s best friend and could spend her entire day letting someone pet her or throw her stuffed elephant so that she can play fetch.  I think she is super adorable!

But she has a habit that I don’t think is adorable.  In fact, it drives me crazy!  When she hasn’t gotten enough attention she will go into the bathroom and stand on her hind feet and unroll the toilet paper.  Then when a sufficient amount is on the ground she will shred it to pieces.  Somehow between potty training and learning to sit, stay and fetch, I didn’t cover that unraveling and shredding all the toilet paper is not acceptable behavior.

When I was training Lexi as a puppy she would sometimes look at me and then blatantly do something she was not allowed to do.  Other times, I could see in her eyes that she was trying her hardest to be good, but the temptation to go beyond her boundaries was too much for her handle.  And she would eventually go outside the boundaries I set for her.  When I would scold her and remind her of the boundaries she would look at me with those sad eyes as if to say, “I’m so sorry.  I really tried to be good.”

As much as I’d like to think I am much more mature than this little puppy, I have to admit I can relate to her.  I have often looked straight into God’s face and then turned around only to disobey His very Word. I know I’m doing something that will not bring glory to His name, something that will not honor my Creator.  Yet, I still do it.  And then I feel just like Lexi, wanting to duck my head and lay down in submission desiring God’s forgiveness.

At other times, I really want to be obedient but I still disobey.  Sometimes, I just give in to the temptation to go beyond the boundaries that God set for me thinking I can sneak out and back in without anyone noticing me and without getting hurt.  He reminds me that these boundaries are not put into place to be a “fun sucker” like we talked about yesterday, but to protect me and to shape me more into His image.  I never enjoy the consequences of over stepping the boundaries.  And in the end I always realize that God really did know what He was doing when He set the boundaries.

Can you relate?  Do you ever feel like Paul, doing the very thing you know you shouldn’t?  I can.  So today, I am making a conscious effort to acknowledge the boundaries that God has set forth in my life.  My heart’s desire is to please Him.  He tells us in His Word that obedience is better than sacrifice.  Which will you choose today?  Remember we only have to choose for today.  Don’t be overwhelmed by the choice you will make tomorrow or the next day, just make the choice today to be obedient.  Take it moment by moment.  And all the moments will add up to a life of obedience.

5 comments on “Bad Dog, No Biscuit

  1. Oh yes! Many times I feel the same way and I keep asking God for forgiveness. What can i do when the temptation is always there and you can’t get rid off it, when what you do make you feel so good and take your loneliness away?

  2. speakinginfaith

    What great questions! Thanks for you comment. I wish I had an easy answer for you. I don’t have 3 easy steps, but I do have some different things you can try.

    1. Read the Bible daily. Read it. Memorize it. Meditate on it. Write it on heart! The word is living and active, sharper than a double-edged sword. It has the power to transform your life. When you spend time in the Word of God you are filling your mind with the things of God rather than your own desires.

    2. You mentioned that when you give into the temptation it takes away your lonliness, but you also mentioned the temptation is always there which makes me think that the lonliness doesn’t actually go away, but whatever sin you are giving into makes you forget about your lonliness temporarily. As you begin to say “no” to your tempation, then you can seek God who is the only one who can fill that lonley void in your heart long term. You may feel better for a few minutes, hours or days, but then the lonliness comes back…so you need to take action to seek out long term satisfaction rather than short term gratification. And only Jesus can provide the peace and the fulfillment that will satisfy your desires forever.

    3. Seek out a leader at your church whom you can trust and ask to make an appointment with them to share your struggle and your desire to overcome. They might be able to direct you to a more specific resource for you temptation. They may also know of a group of believers with whom you can meet and fellowship in order to have a community of support to help you.

    4. PRAY! God’s Word tells us to resist the devil and he shall flee. It also tells us to draw near to God and He will draw near to us. So talk to God about your desires and the temptation and ask Him for the strength to resist and ask Him to change your heart and your desires for that specific tempation.

    Thanks so much for being honest and asking such a great question! I’ll be praying for you!

  3. Thank you Faith!

  4. Pingback: Do you trust me? « Speaking in Faith Blog

  5. Pingback: Sparing the Flesh « Speaking in Faith Blog

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: