Summary: We all have things in our lives that we know we shouldn’t do. We all have things that we’re drawn to or things that we are tempted by. It could be something of a sexual nature in our lives. It could be something of an addictive nature in our lives.

Series: Beyond Boundaries

Message #3: Redeeming Love

By: Jud Wilhite

I have a little boy; he’s almost three years old. One of the things that he absolutely loves to do is he loves to flush things down the toilet. He loves it. I think he even loves it when it gets clogged up and we have to take the toilet apart. He’s into it. We’ve been going round and round with him in our household. I bet it has cost me over $400.00 in plumbing fees to date to fish things out of our toilet that he gets down the toilet. Some of it defies laws of physics. Like he flushed his sisters Barbie doll down the toilet. That takes hand movement to get that done. He flushed not one little people or two but multiple little people down the toilet. Which my plumber brought to me with a smile. He flushed his sister’s sunglasses down the toilet. It’s all kinds of things. I see him sometimes. He stands in the bathroom and looks at the toilet. He knows it’s wrong. He knows if he does it he’s going to sit in time out. He knows he’s going to be in trouble. But he’s eyeing it. I know exactly what is happening because he has my DNA. He’s sitting there and processing. Is it worth it? I know there will be some punishment but is it worth it anyway? The wheels are turning in his little mind.

I thought we had moved beyond the flushing the toilet/clogging it up thing but apparently we hadn’t. His sister, Emma, comes running out from the bathroom this past week. She says, “Dad, Dad – Ethan has flushed a toy tool down the toilet.” I go in and he’s flushed a toy tool down the toilet and it’s all clogged up and won’t flush. I’m not in a good place at this moment. I’m angry and upset. I’m doing the count to ten method. One, two, three, four, five…and it’s just getting worse. I get to ten and it doesn’t help. I go to twenty and I’m just as mad. The inner pastor in me was not welling up. Where is he? I’m looking all over the house and can’t find him. He’s hiding from me. I finally find him – do you know where he’s hiding? He’s hiding in the bathtub behind the shower curtain right by the toilet. He’s right by the scene of the crime. As soon as I go in there he knows. He says, “I’m sorry, Daddy.” Yeah, I have your sorry right here buddy. Actually, I was very nice. I went easy on him. I put him in time out. We had a few tears. He said he was sorry. Of course, about four days later and at this point I don’t call the plumber anymore. I can do plumbing myself. I’ve learned how to do it on my own. If you have plumbing needs, just let me know. I got the toilet off by myself. I had it all taken apart. I can get anything out of a toilet with a hanging rod that I take apart. I’m digging this thing out of the toilet when Ethan comes in and says, “Whatcha doin’ Dad?” What does it look like I’m doing? I think he loves the whole process of it.

It’s a great study of human nature when I think of my three year old little boy because he’s a lot like people. He’s a lot like me and he’s a lot like us. We all have things in our lives that we know we shouldn’t do. We all have things that we’re drawn to or things that we are tempted by. It could be something of a sexual nature in our lives. It could be something of an addictive nature in our lives. For some of us gambling represents that. We may have major issues with it and if we go down that road we know we don’t stop. For some of us alcohol represents that. You go down the list with different items. It’s different for each of us. We all have things we are drawn to. Sometimes, just like my son we stand there before whatever that thing may be and we weigh it out in our mind. I shouldn’t do it. If I do it – it will hurt me. It will hurt my family. It will hurt our future. If I do it – it may put my job in jeopardy. If I do it – it could damage this or that. We do it anyway. Then often after we do it we hide. We don’t climb in the bathtub and pull the shower curtain around us but we hide spiritually in our lives from God. Sometimes after we do it we stay from God or church for a while. We think we’ve blown it and made a mistake and God won’t forgive me. When I get my life together then I’ll get back to church. Sometimes we’ll pull back from a small group that we’re in or our prayer life begins to change. We don’t really feel like we can pray like we used to be able to pray. We just spiritually withdraw and in our own way we hide. Some of us jump into hobbies. Some of us throw ourselves into work. Some of us throw ourselves into addiction. Ultimately when you boil it all down we are hiding in that very thing from the one that loves us most and who wants to help us in the midst of our journey.

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