April 30, 2005

...the darker us

Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth.
~Henry David Thoreau

A friend of mine is trying to get me to come to the dark side. Yes, it's true....a recruiter for the dark side of chocolate. I've been kind of intrigued by, yet noncommittal to actually buying any. I can’t imagine M&M’s with dark chocolate but I will eventually break down and buy some, because there is a buzz going ‘round about them and I am getting curiouser and curiouser.

The dark side of life is intriguing too, though not in a trivial way like m&m’s. We watch movies and television shows that showcase murder investigations, casual romantic relationships and handsome criminals who make us laugh. There is a whole television show that deals with sex crimes and the lawyers that defend the victims. What is this fascination, and why are we so drawn to the side of life that, alarmingly, does not make people cringe and look the other way but to gaze, stare and gawk? What is that? It’s disturbing and fascinating. twisted, scary, shocking….entertaining. I think that is why the Bible has so much instruction on thinking about the good….doing good….training ourselves in goodness. It’s not natural for us….we and our buddy, the sin nature. We have to struggle against it because we are drawn to it, fascinated by it and then realize we are enslaved and ruined by it.

I recently saw this happen to a close friend of ours. He was drawn in like a moth to a flame and was burned…his reputation, his future plans, as well as his own opinion of himself. It broke my heart to watch it. People warned him, wise people….his family, friends, co-workers and other men who have been in his shoes, yet he disregarded it all and threw himself to the flame. Now, less than a month later, he is suffering greatly from the havoc that one reckless choice has caused to not only himself but to his friends, family and to some young people who really looked up to him.

Oh how I wish we could just hide the darkness. I know we can’t hide it…..but in my human mind and as a mother, that is my first instinct. God doesn’t hide the darkness from us. The Bible is full of stories of imperfect people, people who made baaaaaaaaaaaaad choices…ever wonder why they are all in there? I always think, well if God can use those people, He can use me…change me, make me into what He really wants me to be…all is not lost…there’s hope. He turned around their mistakes and used their imperfection, bringing them closer to Him. He created us with free will and allows us to make mistakes… When we blow it, it makes it harder on us, as well as on those we love, but all is not lost…there is hope…and restoration. He can still use us….He still loves us.

We also have the ability to choose goodness. He freely gives wisdom to all who ask. Like a loving parent, He is encouraging us to do what is right, but is there to help us when we fall down and go boom.

Philippians 4:8-9
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

The dark side isn’t worth the longing looks we give it…the price is far too high. Please pray for my friend as he is reeling from his walk there….

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