"Trev, you're going to need shoes. This pavement will burn your feet," I warned as I grabbed the pool bag from the car.
"It's warm, but it's not burning my feet," he called to me over his shoulder as he ran on ahead onto the pavement.
And he was right. Kind of. It wasn't burning his feet.
Not yet, anyway.
I called out for him to come back for his shoes, but again he said he was fine. But about halfway down the pavement path, he began doing what looked like the potty-dance. And I knew it couldn't be that--We're pretty well past the potty-dance phase.
No, he was doing the "Holy-shnikeys-this-asphalt-is-burning-the-flesh-off-my-feet" dance.
A few early steps on a hot path may not seem to have an effect. But a seemingly safe path can get hot in a real hurry. And in no time at all we find ourselves stuck out in the middle with nowhere to go, getting burned with every new step we try to take.
I ran and scooped my son off the hot ground and carried him to the relief of the cool grass nearby. His feet were tender from the hot pavement path he'd just voluntarily taken.
There are paths that don't seem perilous at first. We don't feel the heat, so we proceed as though no harm awaits.
Paths of acquiring debt.
Paths of dishonesty.
Paths of inappropriate relationships.
Paths of pornography.
We don't feel the heat from one conversation with that cute guy, one twisted truth, or one swipe of the credit card. Which is probably why we take another step. And another.
And eventually our loving Heavenly Father--the very One who warned us about the path--is the One who comes in, lifts us off what is burning us, and tends to our tender feet.
What's the path that seems safe--but you've received a warning about its ability to harm you? There have been times in my life when I knew God was shouting warnings at me about a path that did not initially concern me. And the same loving God was the One to eventually rescue me. But not without me getting my feet burned.
Can a man scoop fire into his lap
without his clothes being burned?
Can a man walk on hot coals
without his feet being scorched?
Thank You Father that Your warnings come from Your great love for us. I pray if anyone is perceiving that these words are a warning--perhaps even another warning--that You will strengthen them to TRUST YOU in it. Thank You for Your grace and mercy in the times when we disregard Your warnings, but keep us seeking You so that we'll listen and sidestep the very things from which You are trying to protect us.