While heading south on I-5 I was keeping with the speed limit because there was construction happening. As I saw the 65 mph sign I let out a sigh of relief, “Oh good I can go 70 now. That’s a safe speed to go. Not too fast to get pulled over and get a ticket.” While deep in my thoughts about speeding up to 70 I think to myself, “Hmmm, funny how I justify breaking that law. It’s not that bad it’s only 5 mph over the limit.” Then I think (or God prods) what else do you justify doing in your life that’s not really THAT bad?” Then all of a sudden there’s a voice from behind me chiming into the conversation in my head. It’s as if Jenna has been sitting in my brain listening to my conversation with myself. How did she do this?!
Jenna chimes in and asks, “Why are some cars passing other cars?” I tell her “Well, some are obeying the speed limit and some are not and going faster than others.” Then she asked, “And how fast are you going? Are you obeying the speed limit?” Now by this time I had slowed down to 68 instead of 70. And I wanted to tell her that I was going 65 and even had this little moment that I was justifying why I could tell her that. Buuuutttt, I didn’t I told her I was going 68. And this is where she asked my why and told me what I should be doing, obeying the law of course. (She’s a lot like me; she a rule follower (usually), she’s black and white and things are right or wrong often times. This can be a great thing and also a hard thing at times.) This then led into a great discussion about why we don’t obey laws (and especially God’s laws or ways of doing things) and it’s funny how perceptive even a 5 year old can be. She wasn’t slow to realize that we do it because we want to do things our way, faster and better right?, and don’t worry about the consequences until later.
I’m still thinking through this, it’s not a post to tell you that you’re justifying things in your life that you shouldn’t be. But am I? I justify speeding. I can justify wasting time online when there are better things to be doing. I can justify reading blogs instead of the Bible (I’m encouraged and challenged by what others have to say after all). I can justify not serving others because I have other things to do. I justify watching the Bachelorette (which I may or may not be doing right this minute). The list goes on and on. It’s been a good thing to ponder this week. These things above may not be bad things but they may be things God would want me to give up or change, etc. It’s different for everyone. I love that I serve a God who loves me no matter what but doesn’t leave me where I am. He is constantly challenging me to live a holy life, even if he has to use a speed limit sign on I-5 and my sweet daughter to do it.