One cool winter night, she packed up her dreams and headed out of the door, anticipating the adventures awaiting her in her freedom.
For many hours she wandered, unsure exactly which direction to take to reach the place she wanted to be. She felt like she had spent her life on the outside looking in at a world that she longed to be part of. Her parents had cushioned her in a protective barrier against things that she could not see the harm in, and that she longed to know.
And in a time of desperation, when she felt like she would surely be better off with her own version of freedom, she set out, determined to find it.
But, after wandering the dark streets for many lonely hours that freedom seemed even further out of reach. Yet, she would not turn back. She yearned to taste of the forbidden fruit of freedom so long denied to her. She pressed on, past her misgivings and fears, continuing further and further away from home.
It was during the darkest part of the night she saw it, the sleek lines of the car, the light of the street lamps gleaming in the chrome, and as it passed her it slowed to a stop, and the window came down.
She backtracked her steps to the voice beckoning her from the open window, "Hey, you. Where are you headed?"
And, after a brief exchange, she climbed in.
The inside of the car was every bit as flashy as the outside, and she couldn't help but rub her hands on the leather of the seats and breathe deep of the new car smell.
Not to mention the driver was as perfect as the car, and before long they were speeding along.
Mile after mile passed without notice. Hour after hour flashed away, still they rode. She was captured by the words he wove around her, amazed at the way he knew her every dream.
On and on they went, further and further away they traveled. This was what she had longed for, what she had dreamed of for so long. He promised her freedom, and indeed, she felt free. He took her places she had never been, showed her things she had never seen. He told her he loved her, and promised her if she would just stay with him he would take her places she could never have imagined. He would take her further than she ever thought she would go.
And it was magical, until summer came. She had not been prepared for the seasons to change. She had not really imagined she would be gone this long. She had only come prepared for the winter, and now the heat was unbearable.
Suddenly it occurred to her how far they had traveled. There was no way to return home. She had no means to get there. How unprepared she had been. Now, here she was, hundreds of miles from home, with a companion whose kindness had seemed to evaporate in the heat.
By chance, she was alone when she turned a corner in a truck stop and saw the pay phone. She quickly dialed the number to her home. As soon as she heard her father's familiar voice the tears came.
"Daddy, please come get me."
I was thinking today about the phrase "Sin will take you farther than you ever wanted to go."
And, I began to think about how wonderful sin can seem, how appealing. I began to think of people I have known over the years that have gotten in the car, so to speak, with sin, thinking they were going for a quick joy ride, only to find themselves miles away from home before they even knew what happened.
As I was thinking about it, a picture came into my mind. When we think of the devil we often think of a little red creature with horns and a pitchfork. But, I am here today to tell you, sin is desirable. It comes to you in a nice package designed to lure you in. It appears wrapped in promises and draped in dreams.
Sin will not pick you up in an old clunker that barely runs, sin will pull up in the car of your fantasies. It will be attractive and desirable. And, at first, it will be wonderful to you. The Bible says there is pleasure in sin....for a season....
But, season's change, and time passes, and when the new wears off of that shiny vehicle of your sin you are left stranded in the middle of nowhere with a broke down old clunker.
Although it is better not to succumb to sin at all, we do have a Father who cares, who watches for us, longs for us to return home, waits for that opportunity to celebrate our return.
Sin will take you farther than you ever wanted to go, and it doesn't care if you never make it back, doesn't care if you can handle the heat, doesn't care if you get burned.
It may seem like the ride of your life, but if you go along for the ride sin longs to take you on, you will never return the same way you came.