Chapter-a-Day 2 Corinthians 7

Choose_the_path_wiselyDistress that drives us to God does that. It turns us around. It gets us back in the way of salvation. We never regret that kind of pain. But those who let distress drive them away from God are full of regrets, end up on a deathbed of regrets. 2 Corinthians 7:10 (TM)

As I look back on the path I’ve followed thus far in life’s journey, I can see both of the examples Paul provides in response to distress. I can see times when life’s distresses drove me down a path towards God. In those cases, I depended on God to provide the patience and perseverance I needed to traverse that difficult stretch. My faith grew. When all was said and done I ended up in a better place.

Other times I can see how life’s distresses caused me to take a path away from God. Call it pride, call it anger, or call it plain foolishness. In each case, it was willful disobedience on my part. I was a petulant child refusing to heed his parent’s warning. "I don’t care what you think, Father," I said in my heart. "You may want me to take the path on the right, but I’m going to take this path on the left. Damn the consequences. It’s the path I want to take and I’m taking it!"

Do I regret my numerous willfully disobedient choices? Of course, I do. Taking many a selfish and disobedient path has yielded its share of lamentable consequences and shameful memories. Once I found my way back to the straight and narrow path, it eventually provided a host of valuable lessons. The scars I still have from taking the wrong path are a constant reminder not to do it again. As time goes on, I’d like to think I’m less likely to take the wrong path.

Life’s road will lead us down avenues of distress. It’s unavoidable. What is avoidable is the consequences of choosing to take the wrong side of the street.

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickr and Lord Manley.

4 thoughts on “Chapter-a-Day 2 Corinthians 7”

  1. Great comments, guys. Keith, you really hit a on a good point. We often think of God as an inanimate, detached spectator. He’s not. I think about the disappointment I feel when my kids blow it. God feels the same about me.

  2. v11-12 “And now, isn’t it wonderful all the ways in which this distress has goaded you closer to God? You’re more alive, more concerned, more sensitive, more reverent, more human, more passionate, more responsible. Looked at from any angle, you’ve come out of this with purity of heart.”
    This kind of jarred my own thinking today. If I turn from God I tend to think about how my sin effects me. I don’t often think about how it hurts God. I can look back and see that I missed out on being close with Him. Today I thought about how not being alive, close to Him, and having a pure heart not only takes blessings from me – but does not honor God.
    I don’t want a deathbed of regrets!

  3. v11-12 “And now, isn’t it wonderful all the ways in which this distress has goaded you closer to God? You’re more alive, more concerned, more sensitive, more reverent, more human, more passionate, more responsible. Looked at from any angle, you’ve come out of this with purity of heart.”
    This kind of jarred my own thinking today. If I turn from God I tend to think about how my sin effects me. I don’t often think about how it hurts God. I can look back and see that I missed out on being close with Him. Today I thought about how not being alive, close to Him, and having a pure heart not only takes blessings from me – but does not honor God.
    I don’t want a deathbed of regrets!

  4. Now I’m glad—not that you were upset, but that you were jarred into turning things around. You let the distress bring you to God, not drive you from him. The result was all gain, no loss.
    This is how I view true Godly accountability and speaking truth. It may cause hurt or anger initially with the intent of jarring us to seek God. If that happens I agree that the result can only be gain.

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