Friday, September 6, 2013

Did You Get Away With It?

Dante reserved the lowest circle of hell for betrayers.  They are frozen in ice to some extent, depending on the severity of their crimes.  These are people who thought they were getting ahead, getting away with something at the expense of someone else and in the hereafter found themselves unable to move.  It inspires a great deal of thought.  In all my many years of counseling people through their troubles and helping them walk away from their vices and as a very imperfect human myself, I think I can understand every single vice out there except one.  It is the nonsensical idea that certain, not all, people gain a kind of high level thrill at the idea of doing something wrong and being able to get away with it.

Allow me to dump some ice cold water on this idea, my friends.  We aren't getting away with anything.  Period.  One person I was counseling was beyond elusive and sneaky to the point that I was not certain of all that he was doing.  I just knew he was violent, depressed and didn't always make a great deal of logical sense.  I felt impressed at one point to tell him "the gig's up.  I feel impressed to tell you that you need to come clean with everything right now, or all those things you have been trying to hide from the Lord will come crashing down on top of you."  These were not my words for until that moment I had never considered that someone would try to hide anything from an omniscient God or think that they could.  The idea makes no logical sense.  But it scared the man stiff and that night was the turning point of his life when he began the long, painful road of reform. 

Even if we aren't threatened with the fires (or ice) of hell, do we really gain anything substantial when we knowingly, rebelliously chose to throw righteous action to the wind?  Do we not sell ourselves short, weaken our inner strength, and cast aside our own divine natures?  I have often thought of it this way: for all my insistence that I am justified, that it isn't so bad or the like, I cannot change the fact that every misdeed on my part is another lash of the whip as it were on the back of my Savior, Jesus Christ.  I would rather take that injury on my own back, and to have a perfect Being take it for me is a greater crime than I can bear to purposefully inflict upon Him.  So the next time we think "I can get away with this" let us please remember for our sakes and for His that every deed is noticed and every rebellious act has its eventual consequence.