I had the privilege of growing up just outside of Vernon BC. Part of my early childhood was spent on a small dairy farm. One of my traits is that I have a bit of an explorer’s spirit. I like to find out what’s in an area; I like to see what is around the next corner, or what might be over the next hill. This was true as a young boy as well. When I went outside, I would like to call my big white dog and go exploring and playing. I spent many wonderful hours in the large apple orchard that was beside us. I also liked to cross the main road and explore the woods that were there.
Being only about 5 years old, my mother would always tell me that I needed to stay in the yard so that she would know that I was safe. In my young mind I neither understood nor heeded her admonishments. I still remember the day that I went outside, called my dog, and went across the street to continue my exploration of the unknown. I don’t know how long we were gone, but I remember going through the woods and through a hay field.
I remember thinking that maybe it was about time to be heading home, and so I started off in the direction of the farm. The only obstacle to getting home was a barbed wire fence that lay across my path. Being a farm boy, I thought nothing of it, and so I started to climb over the fence. It is here that I ran into my problem. As I put my leg over the top wire my pants caught on one of the barbs. Usually this wouldn’t have created a problem, but for some reason, try as I might, I could not get off of that barbed wire fence. I hung there in a most precarious position for what seemed like an eternity. I began to pray that someone would come and get me off that fence, but for quite some time no one showed up. Even though I was afraid of what might happen if it was my mother that found me, I was so glad to see her coming down the road in that old Volkswagen Beatle. She lovingly got me off of that fence, and then lovingly took me home and applied the wooden spoon to my seat of learning. This is a story that we still laugh about today.
What I didn’t understand then was that my mother new that there were real dangers in the world around us. I could have gotten lost or hurt. Even though this was many years ago, there were still predators that would prey on little children. My mother was not trying to make my life miserable, but rather she was trying to make sure that I was safe and healthy.
Sometimes we may think that God sets parameters on life that are not fair. The truth of the matter is that God is not a kill joy looking for every opportunity He can find to say “NO” to our adventure. He is our loving Heavenly Father who tells us what is good or bad for us because He cares for us. He wants us to have an exciting life that is full of adventure, and He wants our life to be safe and secure. In the Bible God gives us the guidelines of what is right and good, as well as what is bad or destructive. If we happen to go the wrong way and get hung up on a fence, He is always there to help us get down and get on the right path once again. May I encourage you to read God’s hand book on life, the Bible. It will help guide you through life in a way that will be exciting, fulfilling and spiritually safe. It will also show you the way to be prepared for a wonderful eternity with God.
Pastor Ken Keber