January 3, 2010
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6
There is a difference between fear and respect.
Last summer I had the opportunity to see that distinction in action.
My observation began when a church discovered a hive of bees had taken residence in the church bell tower. The first person who volunteered to move the hive was an amateur. Fear motivated him to move quickly, and he ended up making some costly (and painful) mistakes.
He was stung about ten times before he gave up on the job.
As a result, the officers of the congregation called in a professional. That man respected the bees. He was not fearful of their sting. He moved slowly, deliberately, and without fear. The bees allowed themselves to be moved and never once stung him.
The sight of that respectfully cautious beekeeper moving that hive has stuck with me -- as has the moral of the story.
Each of us encounters difficulties and all of us have our share of problems. These bees -- along with their hives -- are similar to situations common to all humanity.
The question is this: how will we handle these bees?
Will we, motivated by our fear, try to move the bees on our own? If so, it's almost guaranteed we will make mistakes and we will be stung. Just as surely, we will find we have to give up with the job left undone.
On the other hand, we can take our problems and hand them over to the Savior. Having seen every sin since the world began, having come to this world to offer Himself as the substitute to save us from those transgressions, Jesus is the one expert who can make us safe from the sting of the Law.
So the moral is this: a wise Christian isn't dominated by sin's worries. Instead, he entrusts his sin to Jesus -- the expert who disposes of sin so the sinner might be safe.
From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, You are the only one who can keep me safe from the sting of sin and the stumbling blocks Satan places in my path. Remove my fear and replace it with confidence in Your ongoing protection. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries