Miss Woodhouse's Musings

…about life, the universe, and everything. Don't panic!

Playing Games

on 1 November 2009

What happens when you spend your life using people? For one, it’s hard to form real, lasting relationships. People stop being human in your eyes, and instead become pawns that you manipulate to get what you want. The problem is that when you no longer need them to do something for you, then you don’t know how to relate to them. You are so used to asking them for favours, or using them to get attention that you are at a loss on how to have a simple conversation. As a result, you tend to avoid seeing them, talking with them, and connecting with them unless there’s something new you want. It’s just easier to walk away and do something else than it is to put yourself out there.

From the neglected person’s point of view, this pattern of behavior is confusing, controlling, and hurtful. They never know where they stand with you, and they never know how you are going to act. They may love those times when you are all loving and caring, but they hate it when you are stand-offish and aloof. As a result, they will become less and less likely to come running over to you when you need them, less receptive to your needs, and less willing further conversations with you. They just don’t want to be hurt by you again.

We often treat God as a pawn in the game of life. When times get rough, we go running to Him in prayer and read His word faithfully looking for answers and a rescue from our crisis. The harder things become, the more we cling to God and His promises. When things improve, we drift away once again. Our devotions become more sporadic, and our prayers become less impassioned and frequent. God is sidelined until we need Him again.

The difference between God and other people is that after a few cycles of this, humans will just throw up their hands and walk away. God will always be there for you. No matter how far away we stray from Him, He will always be there when we call on Him. He may let us wander for a while, but He will be there for us. Why then, don’t we just stay close to Him? Why mess around with the drifting away part? We only lose when we wander away from Him; we miss the wonderful blessings and advantages of being one of His.

One of the books I love is In His Steps by Charles Sheldon. Though the end of my favourite quote has been cheapened by oversaturation in popular culture, I still love it and put it at the end of every email I send. This is the answer to how we can resist wandering from Him, and how we can cling to Him in the good times and the bad:

“Let us follow Jesus closer; let us walk in His steps where it will cost us something more than it is costing us now; let us pledge not to do anything without first asking: What would Jesus do?”

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