Points to Ponder: Sometimes you should sweat the small stuff

Points to Ponder
Sometimes you should sweat the small stuff

"Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." (I Peter 5:8 NIV)
How does the roaring lion capture its prey? Not by announcing himself and making his target aware and able to prepare its escape. The lion approaches carefully and quietly until an opportune moment of weakness or lack of attentiveness is apparent. Then he strikes.
So it is with our lives, especially as we grow in our faith. Those who are not growing and are not attempting to are already serving the Devil through their complacency. The Devil's favorite seat is on the fence. If the Devil is not bothering you it is usually because you are not doing anything that is bothering him.
You and I have known nationally famous ministry leaders as well as some local ones. We have seen some fall into sin and out of the ministry. In their shame they have given the enemies of the lord and His church "occasion to blaspheme." Big falls usually come at the end of several small steps. A little germ of temptation gets into our space. One small compromise, then another; then a denial of where things are heading, and step by step the inattentive one edges toward the precipice. "That will never happen to me...I could never do something like that," etc, etc. That is what they all say - and they all did say it or at least believed it.
"...each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death." (James 1:14-14 NIV)
It could be death of a relationship, of a marriage, of a career, of a ministry, and even of the sinner himself. The roaring lion entices his prey through the little things. Are you being circumspect in your walk (Eph. 5:15-17), watching yourself? Are you making yourself accountable to others who care about your soul? "If anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself" (Gal. 6:3)
Back in 1990, the space shuttle Atlantis was equipped and ready to fly on a top secret mission. The launch however had to be postponed for five days. Technical problems sometimes cause this and the repairs can take time. But the biggest hold up to the mission was beyond the expertise of the NASA scientists. The astronaut had a cold.
Dr. Maxie Dunham calls this story of the Atlantis a "parable of life." Little things teach big lessons. Imagine a multi-million-dollar mission, in a multi-billion dollar ship, engineered by highly trained and qualified scientists and astronauts. Then imagine a germ, which can only be seen under a microscope. The common cold germ enters the scene and renders all of that power and wealth and best-made plans useless. Humbling, isn't it?
As Maxie Dunham says: "When you are beginning to think more highly of yourself then you ought to think, remember the secret mission of Atlantis and its delay by the common cold." (Perceptions, Vol II, pg 101 1991)
What little things need your immediate attention?

This column can be found on the web at: www.fumcl.org. Pastor Whitmore is not affiliated with Picket News, nor does he submit material directly to our publication. We regularly reprint interesting articles found at his public web site and encourage all readers to visit for similar material.