I was recently at the gym beginning the ol’ treadmill workout. It took a little longer than usual to untangle my earbuds, but after detanglement and getting the tunes going, I finally looked up to see what was on TV. One TV was showing a zombie movie. The TV next to that was a 24-hour news station blah, blah, blahing about newsy stuff and on the next TV was “The View”.
I watched the zombie movie.
I don’t normally watch this kind of stuff anymore, but this was the second time in a month that a zombie movie was on TV while I was forever on the treadmill. I must admit watching those things is some good motivation to get in shape. I mean, to fight zombies you have to run and run and run some more, then climb up and over stuff while you fight and do acrobatic stuff and then run some more while holding heavy weaponry that even the most novice shooter in the movie knows how to skillfully use.
I’m trying to get in shape ya’ll, but I am not zombie apocalypse ready.
Having been somewhat entertained by these flicks, I began some serious, soulful pondering. Like, why don’t zombies eat each other? How do they know to only eat living humans? Why can’t the living humans put on some bad make-up and walk around like zombies? Since zombies don’t eat zombies that seems like the thing to do. Those zombies have some serious munchies, don’t they? It makes me wonder if they sneak in some bong hits in that moment between the person dying and coming back undead. How long do they “live” if they don’t get shot in the head or otherwise annihilated?
Have you ever noticed how in movies there’s always at least one small group of humans who fights against all odds to stay alive? We cheer them on even though all seems completely hopeless even if they do somehow manage to survive. And there’s always that one guy (or gal) that causes us to rejoice when he finally meets his much-deserved violent end—we have no mercy for such as that guy.
After mulling over all those questions, I found myself walking around a corner into some serious reflection. Watching all those zombies, gave me a better picture of what sin is more like, rather than how we treat it. Sin is voracious and its appetite cannot be quenched. It won’t stop hounding us and wanting to munch on us to join its ranks. Sin takes its pound of flesh that kills a part of us and then causes us to be undead, but no longer alive. Once one sin zones in on us, then others gather around for the kill.
The difference is that we let sin grab hold of us—we don’t always think it’s something to fight against. I want what I want and this seems like the answer. How could something I want so much be all that bad? We usually can’t see what sin really looks like as it hunts us down. It looks and feels inviting, not mean and nasty, bent on death and destruction. If only sin presented itself in zombie-like ugliness, I bet we would fight against all odds to stay out of its grasp. Otherwise, why else do we keep telling ourselves it’s a fun friend to play with until it’s too late to see what it really is?
While I’d rather not share what things tempt me down the wrong path, I was in need of that picture in my head—if only to give a little extra effort to fight against the thoughts that keep coming my way. But it is nice to know, that I’m not in the fight alone. I’ve got the ultimate fighter on my side. He’s already shot sin in the head, so He knows what I need to do in the fight. He’s got all the weapons I could ever need and just when it seems all hope is lost, He’ll jump in and save me as I cry for help.
Thankfully, even when I deserve it the least, He never stops loving me and being my hero.
I know I am rotten through and through so far as my old sinful nature is concerned. No matter which way I turn, I can’t make myself do right. I want to, but I can’t. When I want to do good, I don’t. And when I try not to do wrong, I do it anyway. … Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. —Romans 7:18-19, 24-25a (NLT)