Limitations. Everyone’s got them. There’s only so much time in a day. There are only so many things one can do. Money will only go so far. While I may have a talent for music, athletically I have an amazing one inch vertical, so no one’s exactly begging me to be on their basketball team.
Limitations – the place where you draw the line.
The Bible speaks clearly about the limits of man.
- “There is none righteous, no not one.” Romans 3:10 | so perfection on my own, not really an option.
- “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment…” Hebrews 9:27 | One day my life will certainly come to an end and then I will give an account for my every thought, action and intent.
- “…man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD.” Deuteronomy 8:3 | There’s more to this life than eating and drinking, but even those things are necessary. Even more needful – the word of God.
These limitations are set by God, the natural way of things. It’s the way we’re designed. Try as we may, there are some limits we won’t ever cross on our own.
But there are other limits, the self-imposed kind. These limits are the ones that concern me the most.
- What kinds of things would I NEVER do?
- What kind of people could I NEVER love?
- What kind of activity will I ALWAYS avoid?
- Are there places I won’t go?
- At what point do I willingly set aside my morality because my happiness is more important?
- Is enough really enough and is there a limit to this hunger that drives me to work, to eat, to buy, to push.
- Will I ever be satisfied?
- How do I decide when I’ve reached my limit?
It seems the struggles of our lives don’t happen in the happy middle. They happen on the edges where one limit collides with another.
We see this play out clearly in regards to our reaction to the things of God.
- God says be faithful to your spouse. But my happiness is more important to me than faithfulness so I cross one limit in order to satisfy another.
- God says forgive and you will be forgiven. But getting people to recognize how right I am is more important to me than having a right relationship with others. So I leave people behind and sit smugly soaking in self-satisfaction.
- God says share the gospel, make disciples. But I don’t want people to think I’m some kind of religious nut or that I’m forcing my beliefs on them. So I never say a thing, hoping the quality of my life will be enough to persuade them of their need for God.
Some limits are decided for us. Some we choose for ourselves. What are the limits you face today? What limits will you overcome? Will you define your limits or will your limits define you?
What are you willing to do out of simple obedience to God and what if God asked you to do something today that was outside the limits of your own ease, comfort or pleasure? Take some time today to read Genesis 22:1-19. Abraham was pushed to the limits of his faith. We’ll discuss this more in worship this Sunday.
Where do you draw the line?
God is looking for a people who recognize that He draws the line and who are willing to stay within the boundaries He sets. 2 Chronicles 16:9 says, “For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him…” Sometimes loyalty means there are lines God has drawn that you will never cross. Sometimes loyalty means there are lines YOU have drawn that you need to recognize, redraw and overcome.
Where do you draw the line? Allow God to show Himself strong on your behalf today and redraw the limits of your life.
This devotional originally posted @ www.fbcowasso.org.