Over Memorial Day weekend, we headed to the pancake feed in Priest Lake, Idaho. With my plate of yummy pancakes in hand I began to fill my cup with orange juice. I thought it might be too sweet so I decided to water it down. I assumed the other beverage choice was water. Wrong! It was milk. What was in my cup was now a cloudy substance that tasted badly.
Often I think we do the same with our relationship with God. We water it down by picking and choosing what best fits our lifestyle and ignore what the Bible calls us to do. Why? Because it doesn’t fit with how we choose to live.
Let me explain. In college I thought I believed in God but I didn’t need to read the Bible or go to church. I believed there was a God but I was going to live with my boyfriend, now my husband. I had to be sure he was the right guy for me. I went to church on Christmas and Easter. I said a prayer only when I needed something. If God was that cup of orange juice, I dumped a whole lot of my selfish desires into it to water it down in order to achieve what tasted good to me.
What I got was nothing close to what God wanted our relationship to look like. I had clouded something that was to be so sweet. Psalm 34:8 says, Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. We are not called to take a tiny taste and mix what we want with it. God wants us to open up and take it all in. That means all His goodness and all His commands. I gave little thought about how it must look to God because I knew what I wanted. I wanted to enjoy whatever liberties I saw fit.
Today I am quick to say, “Please do not do what I did. Wait until you are married. Don’t move in with someone before you get married. Please treat the gift of sex with respect. Save it for your spouse. On my wedding day I mourned the fact that I had not waited.”
I am not trying to pick on anyone because I have my fair share of sin. But over the years I have heard adults who claim to be walking with the Lord, talk about teens with so much disgust because they feel the teen is sleeping around and yet they themselves are sleeping with more than one person outside of marriage. They water down their walk with the Lord by what feels good to them and use their age to justify it. The last time I checked, God did not say sex outside of marriage is okay if you are over a certain age.
Love for money, power, gossip, lust, and slander are just a few of the things we find ourselves adding to our cup because they bring us a temporary feeling of happiness. But in the end we are left with something that tastes way worse than my drink at the pancake feed. Watering down our orange juice to cut the amount of sugar is one thing but we should not be watering down our relationship with the Lord by filling ourselves half way with God and the other half with what is of the world.
Please take a look at your walk with God. If it could be put in a cup would you accept all of what He offers or water it down with what works for you? Choose wisely.