Sleeping in the Dirt

Yesterday my husband and I went for a walk and our dog Autumn came along. She was having a great time freely running around and smelling everything. This seemed to bring her such joy. Then we came to a place on our walk where she could continue with us or head back to the house. We tried to persuade her to stay with us. We even commanded her to come but she decided to do what she wanted to do, disobey us and head back to the house. She’s very stubborn and rebellious.

When we had returned from our walk we found that she had gone under the house. My husband tried and tried to coax her out from under the house but she wasn’t having any of it. She’s an inside dog so she would have had to have a bath in order to come back inside. Autumn chose to spend the night under the house sleeping in the dirt.

What’s life like for Autumn inside the house? Well, she gets to enjoy the air conditioning. She gets healthy food and clean water. She even gets treats from time to time. She has a nice soft bed to lay on. She gets to spend time with her family. She’s safe inside and rests peacefully.

What’s life like for Autumn outside under the house? She sleeps in the dirt. She’s alone in the dark. There’s no guaranty of her safety. There is no fresh water so if she gets thirsty she has to drink dirty pond water. There is definitely no food there. And it’s hot outside right now since its summertime in the South.

It reminds me of us with God. We are just walking along with Him and enjoying fellowship with Him. Then we come upon a fork in the road of life. We can choose to stay in fellowship with God and continue walking with Him in joy or we can choose to go our own way apart from Him. God is trying to persuade us to stay with Him but something is tempting us to go in the other direction. The temptation seems like such a good idea at the time so we give in to it. (Matthew 26:41 “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”) And, just like Autumn, we end up sleeping in the dirt of sin. We have no more fellowship with our Father, who loves us, or fellowship with others who are part of the family of God. (Psalm 55:14 with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship at the house of God, as we walked about among the worshipers.) We are out of God’s protection. (Psalm 4:8 In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, Lord make me dwell in safety.) We are no longer drinking the living water that only Jesus provides. (John 4:13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”) We are no longer being nourished by God’s word. (Jesus answered, “It is written ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God’.”) And we are just plain miserable. All because we want our own way. (Isaiah 53:6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way, and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.)

Is this a picture of you today? Have you chosen to sleep in the dirt of sin instead of sleeping in the Father’s house? He wants to clean you up and bring you back into fellowship with Him. (Jeremiah 33:8 I will cleanse them from all the sin they have committed against me and will forgive all their sins of rebellion against me.) All you have to do is go to Him. (Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”) He’s calling you today. Choose wisely.

~Patrice Maguire



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