Bible Reading: Isaiah 64:4-5
You welcome those who cheerfully do good, who follow godly ways. Isaiah 64:5
SUPPOSE YOU HAVE the opportunity to make up a game. You design your own playing board. You make playing pieces out of little trinkets you find around the house. You even write down the rules.
Then two of your friends come over. You spread the playing board on the floor. You carefully explain the rules of the game. Then you generously allow someone else to take the first turn.
Everything goes fine for a while. The game is even more fun than you thought. But then one of your friends makes an illegal move.
“You can’t do that,” you say. “Remember the rules?”
“I don’t agree with your rules. I think the game will work better if I get to use my own rules.”
“Hey,” your other friend says, “if you get to make up rules, I should get to make up rules.”
“But I already told you what the rules are!” you say. But it’s too late. Your friends aren’t listening. They’re playing by their own rules. And they’re not even having fun. By the end of the afternoon, they’ve gotten into several fights. When they finally leave, they’re not talking to each other or to you!
How would that make you feel? It would be a bummer, wouldn’t it? Well, if you can imagine how that might feel, you can imagine how God feels. After all, he created the universe and everything in it. He placed people on this earth and gave them everything they need to live. He even told them the “rules of the game.” But some people don’t agree with his rules. They think they should be able to make up their own rules. Others try to convince themselves he never gave any rules in the first place. And some just ignore his rules.
But not only are people wrong when they do that, they also cheat themselves. If they’d just play according to the rules, they’d be a lot better off—and they’d have a lot more fun, too. We all would!
REFLECT: How do you think God feels when people ignore his commands and try to make up their own “rules” for life? Do you think people would be better off (and have more fun) if they lived according to God’s commands? Why or why not?
ACT: Play a game like Monopoly with your family or friends, and imagine what the game would be like if everyone ignored the rules.
PRAY: “Lord, you’re a wonderful God. You welcome those who cheerfully do good, who follow godly ways. Help me to be like that and not like those who ignore or disobey your loving commands.”