By far the worst kind of enemy is the one you don’t see coming. As unpleasant as straight down the line war-fighting is, at least you know what you are up against. Those that have patrolled in Iraq or Afghanistan will tell you that the fear of being caught by an IED is the worst kind of fear, which eats at you constantly. Indeed, many have suffered at the hands of these insidious devices, and even though some haven’t been injured by them, they have suffered long term trauma, perhaps PTSD, because of the fear and destruction that IED’s generate.
Life can be like that too. Unlike on patrol, we don’t necessarily go through life constantly on the look out for those ‘booby-traps’, sent to try us, but nonetheless they come anyway: from the disappointment of not getting that job or promotion, to getting a bad annual report; from falling ill, to losing a family member or a friend; from receiving a sports injury, to losing a limb in a serious traffic accident, there are always unexpected life-changing things that happen which take us by surprise. Remember, this world is not as it should be; therefore, bad things happen in a broken world.
“You are my rock and my fortress. Lead me out of this danger. Pull me from the trap my enemies set for me, for I find protection in you alone. I entrust myself into your hand. Rescue me, LORD, for you are a faithful God.”Psalm 31:4
The world is broken because evil exists. The evil in this world has infected and affects all of us, and we are likewise not all we should be – because we are broken too. If we are honest with ourselves, we know this to be true. We are never quite as able as we would like to be, we get old, weak and wrinkly, and eventually 10 out of 10 of us will die – this was never meant to be the case, but it is a fact. Not only this but this evil keeps us from a right relationship with our Maker-God. But, there is some good news though…
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.John 3:16-17
Jesus made a way for us to be able to make it all the way back to God, by clearing a path through the ‘booby-trap’ of evil that prevents us from making it there – in the same way that a safe path is made through an area well known for IED’s, so that you can make it back safely to the patrol base. Not only does Jesus provide safe passage home, but He helps us through the trauma that the ‘booby-traps’ of life, which catch us off-guard, cause as we make our way along the path of life.