i was a summer ragamuffin as a kid.
The dog days were perpetually shaded with deep hues of recklessness and enchantment.
It was riot time. Time for the beatnik ragamuffin and the flower child to kick off their shoes and make waves.
They were fireflies in Wichita.
Slack-lines in Billings.
Fireworks like canons.
Drive-in movies in the sticks.
And they were cold mornings tucked deep somewhere inside a warm sleeping bag.
My family used to tent-camp most summers.
Now we have a demon called a "fifth-wheel" - a summer killer.
Today "Family camp-outs" is a has-been that has been and will be one of my favorite memories.
Ever since I was a kid, one of the most unpleasant sensations to me has been waking up in a tent.
See, the fatal flaw of tent-camping is that you have about a 2-minute window
in the morning from the time your sleeping bag is shielding you from what
feels like the arctic tempest to the moment it becomes an absolute sweat-box.
Amid the summer-tide and lazy days those cold mornings will really stunt your motivation.
Curled up in your sleeping bag, hearing brave morning-dwellers beginning to cook breakfast outside,
you think to yourself, "surely in five minutes I'll muster up the courage to sit up and put a shirt on..."
45-minutes later and people are talking outside the tent, maybe even about you...
but even that isn't enough to get you up.
They try and rouse you, but you pretend not to hear.
Now you're comfy... and unashamed...
You just wanna sleep. It feels so good.
You even wish people weren't talking so loud trying to wake you up.
Then it happens... Almost all at once.
The sun... hits your tent.
Your body begins to sweat.
Your bag begins to stick to your skin.
You still don't want to get up, but now you're miserable.
That's life in sin.
I don't mean that as some hyperbolic quip.
I mean, figuratively of course, sin is like that.
Life lived in sin is comfortable... It feels fantastic...
It shields you from the initial discomfort of faith.
You tell yourself you'll wake up soon enough.
Then you lose any sense of shame.
You don't care when other's are trying to wake you...
In fact, they annoy you...
Maybe you believe they're judging you for sleeping in...
And then... when you couldn't be more comfortable.
Sin makes a mess of you. It chews you up and spits you out.
... and then leaves you feeling dirty.
But oh, how the Son shines...
And when He shines on sin, the sinner wakes up.
Let's wake up, friends.
Rise and shine.
Endure the initial blast of cold air and live in the light.
This is why it is said: "Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you."
- Ephesians 5:14