Lest We Drift Away

I write myself more notes these days. Write more things down on a piece of paper and then leave that piece of paper in a conspicuous place. How come? Because things slip my mind. There one moment and then, poof, vanishes. Haven’t quite got to the point of writing something down in one room that needs to be done in the next room because I know I may not necessarily remember what I came to do when I get in that next room–but sometimes I wonder if I should!

Prone to forget. Prone for things to escape me. Not kicking thoughts out or my mind, they just kind of slip away.

And I’m reminded this morning that what can happen with trivial matters can also happen with not so trivial matters. Matters like our salvation.

Therefore we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it.

(Hebrews 2:1 ESV)

Recently I’ve heard of a couple of high-profile Christians–one a well-known author and the other a much-admired songwriter–who have “walked away from the faith.” And I’m wondering how much they actually walked away or, if it was more likely that they actually drifted away.

Doing a 180 degree turn is a lot harder than wandering a few degrees off course. But eventually the few degrees off course, intentional or not, can also lead to a total turnaround. Takes a lot to turn your back on something. Takes a lot less to just allow yourself to lean away from something. But, unchecked, you’ll end up in the some position eventually.

Drifting away. Sounds uneventful. Sounds kind of restful. Whereas training for godliness (1Tim. 4:7-8) can be strenuous; running the race (1Cor. 9:24-27) can be arduous; and fighting the good fight (1Tim. 6:12, 2Tim. 2:3-4) can sometimes be dangerous; allowing something to just flow past can almost seem desirous.

But the something we’re talking about drifting away from here is our “great salvation” (Heb. 2:3b). And that’s why the writer is contending so fervently for the faltering faith of his Hebrew audience.

“Pay closer attention,” he says. Don’t neglect it, he says (Heb. 2:3a). Be on guard against drifting away.

Don’t think, “That will never happen to me. I know where I’m going. I’ll just set things on autopilot.” That kind of thinking sets things up for a slow drift.

There is no pre-programmed, self-driving vehicle that we can get into to take us home. It is a Spirit-led, daily walk. No GPS coordinates we can punch in and then let ‘er fly. Instead we’ll need to navigate the inevitable trips, slips, and dips in life, informed by the Word of God, enabled by the Spirit of God.

We must pay closer attention as our salvation draws near. We need to have our head more in the game now than we did at first as the flesh seeks to discredit our witness, the world seeks to distract our energies, and the enemy still seeks to destroy our souls.

Lest we drift away.

I need to keep reminding myself where I’ve been and where I’m going. Keep leaning in to what I’ve been redeemed for . . . and Who I’ve been redeemed for.

I need to keep writing myself notes.

By His grace. For His glory.

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2 Responses to Lest We Drift Away

  1. Brent Allan says:

    And I like to keep reading your notes each morning, along with the Word. And instead of being prone to wander, it is good to ponder. I find it’s important to not only read, but chew on the word, taking that sanctified rabbit trail. I like the way you think, and write. And I like the current series to “Remember”. Thanks Pete.

  2. Penny says:

    Different. I like it. Rather poetic in places. Important point. Don’t want to be a drifter.

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