What Ben Says…
By Kathryn Taylor
In 1787 Ben Franklin said... "In the beginning of the contest with Britain when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for the Divine protection. Our prayers, Sir, were heard, and they were graciously answered. …And have we now forgotten this powerful friend? Or do we imagine that we no longer need his assistance? I have lived for a long time (81 years), and the longer I live the more convincing proof I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it possible that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that "Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it." I firmly believe this, and I also believe that without his concurring aid we shall proceed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel...
I have found this to be true in my own life. Each time I proceed without God’s guidance or blessing, it has always ended in disaster. And, while God spared my life, the pain and consequences of the choices I’ve made makes me wonder why I would ever seek life outside His will again.
It’s also easy to see “Babel building” in the lives of other people. We watch, silently or not, assessing and judging their foibles. God has given many examples in His word, as well. Esau sold his birthright for a bowl of stew… David brought shame to the whole nation for one night with another man’s wife and committed murder trying to cover it up… Jonah ended up in the belly of a whale for three days… Samson, the strongest man, spent his last years as a slave with his eyes gouged out because of his lust for an evil woman… Sarah interfered with God’s promise of a son by having her husband sleep with another woman producing a son whose descendants still war with the promised son’s descendants to this day.
It is a dangerous plan, indeed, when any of us think that we can take the reins of our lives… charge full speed ahead… thumb our nose at the wisdom of elders… engulf our conscious with the melody of the world… drown out the gentle tugging of the Holy Spirit… ignore God’s word… just to do what we want to do. We are even more foolish to think there will be no consequences or pain for the things that we do, especially if we call ourselves God’s child. God promises that He will discipline His own children. In Hebrews 12, He says For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth… But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
Let us be wise like Abraham who obeyed God to the point of nearly sacrificing his son… like Noah, who built the ark for years while being laughed at… like Esther, who saved her people… like the prostitute who helped Joshua at Jericho, saving her entire family. Every act of disobedience brought destruction to family. Every act of obedience brought safety and blessing. What is the state of your family? What have your or other’s choices done within your own family? Are you bringing blessing into your family or curses? Is what you are doing really worth the price you and others will pay? Do you think repeating some of the same mistakes your parents made will bring different results? Is the way you mask your pain… try to get love… deal with sorrow or loneliness… or handle your anger, pleasing to God????? It’s a daily battle for me. How about you? Choose this day whom you’re going to serve!!
Hosea 14:9 says………”for the ways of the Lord are right, and the just shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall fall therein.”
Psalm 128:1-2 says, Blessed is every one that feareth the Lord, that walketh in his ways. For thou shalt eat the labor of thine hands: happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee.