Two weeks ago, a toddler shot his mother and her boyfriend. He found a gun in her purse and was messing around with it. Ten days before that, a two year-old fatally shot himself with a gun he found in the glove compartment. I’m not anti-gun; my son-in-law used a gun to protect his family from a rattler. But anyone in his right mind would insist that his children not touch his guns. (He would also lock them up but this post isn’t about gun safety, it’s about loving rules.) It isn’t being harsh for a parent to make strict rules about guns and enforce them. It’s loving. The kids may think you are spoiling their fun. They may resent your rules and try everything they can to break them. But the rules are loving, because you have made them to protect their lives.
The same principle holds true for God, Who is often perceived in a negative, kill-joy sort of way. People say, “Why should we follow a bunch of rules laid down thousands of years ago by a mean-spirited, ignorant deity? Let’s make up our own rules about what we can do.” They resent God and decide to ignore what His rules.
But God says,
“… ‘As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, O house of Israel?’” (Ezekiel 33:11b)
God loves you. He wants you to live. Remember that the next time you feel like breaking one of His rules.
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