I’ve just returned from a walk in the woods with my daughter, and she pointed out something I’d never noticed:
I’ve always thought I was quite observant, but this sign had completely missed my notice despite the fact I’d walked past it countless times! And it’s got me thinking – what other things have I not noticed? Maybe there are other interesting things I haven’t spotted, or more importantly, perhaps I’m not noticing things that need my attention.
This sign on the tree was obviously nailed there years ago, but over time the bark has covered it and now the message – which I presume was some kind of warning – is lost.
My guess is that familiar routines and habits can sometimes blind us to what needs our attention. Also, we learn through our mistakes, but over time lessons can be lost as we slowly slip back into old ways. Our conscience becomes dulled, and like the bark growing over the sign, there are no warnings.
Truth is, I need my conscience to keep me on the right path. When the sign was fully visible, it probably directed walkers to keep to the footpath and not wander off course. I need that reminder daily in my life!
I believe that God hopes that each one of us will respond to the Spirit’s nudges. Doing this will keep us on the right track, where we will positively discover that we are truly significant and secure in God.
Although I was brought up to fear an angry judgemental god, I now sense that God wants us to keep on track for our own good. We don’t have to do anything for God to delight in us, but if we’re off course, we’ll prevent ourselves from knowing this delight.
So the message nailed to the tree is a reminder to keep on track, by being alert to my conscience. May we all ‘nail it!’
Truth is… Let us put everything out of our lives that keeps us from doing what we should. Let us keep running in the race that God has planned for us. Hebrews 12:1