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Archive for September, 2012

Almost two weeks ago we had some church friends for something we call “Dinner for Eight”.  We have a yummy meal, play games, and have tons of fun laughing and getting to know each other.  We do a different group gathering every month.

On this particular one it was getting close to the end of the night and my hubby opened the door to let some cool air in because even with the windows open, it was getting warm around the dining room table.  As I got up to get something I saw our cat, Smokey (notorious for his hunting ability), run inside with a HUGE rabbit hanging out of his mouth.  It was almost as big as him!  He had the animal by the neck and it was so large that it dragged across the floor as he proudly walked into the living room.  I guess he thought that because we had so many people in the house he had to provide a bigger catch!

“Smokey!”  I yelled, which was a stupid thing to do because it just made him run (but, hey, what can I say?  I was in shock because I had a house full of guests and an animal about to be slaughtered in front of them).  He took off downstairs… with the rabbit… into the STORAGE ROOM (full of junk and an excess of closets, oil tanks, furnace, etc. – you get the picture)!  He let go of the rabbit and the mortally wounded creature took off to hide somewhere.

Well… to end this morbid story… we did not find the rabbit that night and almost two weeks later it is still missing.  Only now the house is beginning to smell real bad.  We searched and searched, but have come up empty and aren’t sure what to do now!  I guess we will keep looking until we find it!

The first day I had all the candle warmers going in practically every room of the house.  It smelled so horrible that it overpowered even the sweetest, most wonderful smell of “Iced Carrot Cake” (one of my new favorite warmer scents).  The next day I turned off all of the warmers, because I decided that I did NOT want to associate that lovely scent with the stench of decay.  Rotting bunny was all I could smell, no matter where in the house I went!

As I grumbled about it that morning a thought hit me… What if our sweet smelling walk with Christ was tainted or overpowered with the stench of the decay of sin?  Pretty soon our whole “house” would be affected by it!

Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? — 1 Corinthians 3:16

 

Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. – Ephesians 5:2

 

Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. – Romans 6:12

I string those three scriptures together to paint a picture…  Just like I refused to allow the decay of death to taint my favorite candle scent, we should refuse to allow sin to taint our lives.  This could be for two main reasons:

  1. We want to smell sweet before God.  He doesn’t want to see us corrupted by the things the world has to offer around us that will ultimately harm us in the end.  He wants the VERY BEST for us!  He wants us to make right choices that will lead us to joy, love, and peace instead of sadness, pain, and death.
  2. We want to smell sweet before others.  One of the biggest complaints we hear is that all Christians are hypocrites.  IT’S NOT TRUE!  We are human and make mistakes like everyone else, but some of us are trying real hard to display the love of God in our lives towards others.  When you look the same, act the same, and live the same as everyone else, you cannot separate the decay of sin from the abundant life that God has for us.  In another way to explain it, our “light” is extinguished by darkness.  Why would anyone want to come to church with us if we “smelled” like death?  We can be ruled by anger, lust, gossip, bullying, addictions, or many other things that control our body or personality OR we can be ruled by love, peace, patience, self control, or those kinds of things that come from God!  Others WILL know the difference.  We can’t hide it.

I definitely don’t want to stink, do you?

INTERACTION:

  1. Parent:  What are some things that can corrupt our lives? What do you think God wants for you & your teen?
  2. Teen:  How do you think others view you?  Is it a challenge to live every day for God?

PARENTS:

Here are some additional scriptures for you & your teen to look up daily & discuss throughout the rest of the week:  1 John 2:15-17;  Romans 12:2;  James 4:4;  Philippians 4:8-9;  Romans 8:5;  Romans 14:17-18

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