Friday, May 11, 2012

Collateral Damage

We have all seen the pictures of war. War does not discriminate, it affects not only the "bad guys" it also hits the innocent.

The pictures from war are horrible, devastating, children crying in the streets, bodies laying in the rubble, survivors looking lost, desperate.

And it is not only those who have been attacked that suffer. Those who carry out the attacks, the ones who follow the orders and inflict the damage suffer as well.

I realize war is, at times, necessary. Because of circumstances it has to happen. This is a truth that has been since the beginning of time. And, along with that truth is the fact that not everyone who loses their lives deserves to die. They don't deserve to lose those they love, to carry the scars and the memories of war.

I know it may seem that when you make a decision to do something you really have no business doing that decision only affects you. But, that is not true.

When you step out of the realm of safety provided by living for God and take part in whatever it is your flesh has convinced you that you cannot live without, you are not the only one affected. I think that is concept our age of self tends to downplay.

But, just like that bomb that drops to take out one enemy also hits innocent people's homes and may end lives or cause serious permanent injuries, the explosion caused by your sinful actions spreads to those closest to you. When you reach out to drag sin into your life you are effectively pulling in those around you.

And when sin leaves its dirty imprint on you, be sure that, like Pigpen from the Snoopy cartoons, others are caught in your dust cloud.

Will sin actually take you farther than you ever wanted to go? No doubt about it. When your so called joy ride is finished there will surely be someone else who is responsible for part of the cost of your wasted trip. Sin never leaves you like it found you either. When you come back to yourself and find yourself knee deep in mud feasting with the hogs you realize what you left behind, if you are "lucky" that is.

We live in a world that is self serving and self pleasing. It seems to be all about ME. That is what the devil would like us to live by, "you deserve to be (fill in the blank)." And, maybe you do deserve it. But, do others the mess your fleshly desires are going to drag them into? When you reach the bottom, will you look around to see those that you care about at the bottom with you, in a place that your sin drug them to?

During war, there is planning a preparation to decrease the damage, to decrease the loss of lives.

So, it stands to reason that the best way to prevent the destruction of those around you is to remember you are not the only one affected by sin. Think about your actions, pray, seek answers in the Word or through godly counsel.

Look around! Think! Remember!!