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A few years ago I had a scary encounter with a masked man wielding a knife. I remember him with gratitude, though, since he was an orthopedic surgeon to whom I paid thousands of dollars to correct some problems with my left foot...

For 3 months the surgeon forbade bicycling, hiking, running and other activities that might endanger the healing process. Basically, anything that sounded fun he vetoed. On one visit I tried to talk him into permitting a premature golf match. "Some close friends get together only once a year, and this one's important to me. I've been practicing my swing, and if I use only my upper body, and keep my legs and hips very still, could I join them? I think I could keep most of my weight on my right foot."

Without a flicker of hesitation, my doctor replied, "It would make me very unhappy if you played golf within the next two months."

"I thought you were a golfer," I said, seeking sympathy.

"I am. That's how I know you can't swing without rolling that foot inward and putting weight on the bones that are trying to heal."

Of course my doctor had nothing against my playing golf; a fellow golfer, he understood my frustration. Yet he also had my best interests at heart. It would truly make him unhappy if a patient were to indulge in some short-term pleasure that might jeopardize a full recovery. He wanted me to play golf the next year, and the next, and the rest of my life, and for that reason he could not sanction a match so soon after my surgery. (Phillip Yancey, Rumours)

Why should I seek out God’s view on how to live my life? For the same reason I seek my doctor’s opinion. I defer to my doctor, trusting that we share the same goal, my physical health, but that he brings to the process greater wisdom and expertise. And I am learning to view sins as spiritual dangers - much like carcinogens, bacteria, viruses, and injuries - that must be avoided at all costs, for my own sake. I am learning to trust that God wants the best life for me in this world, not some diminished, repressed life.

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