"Why did you lie to me?" She asked."Because," he answered, "I am a wild animal."
These lines from Fantastic Mr. Fox stick with me this week. The wildness of my sin taunts me, teases me, tempts me. I like to think I am beyond the big sins, but the truth is that it is the small foxes that ruin the vineyard and my sin-foxes are the wildest of them all.
It's the surprise of sin that frustrates and confounds me. I cannot get past the surprise attack on my soul, my actions, my mouth—the things that leap to my touch, tongue, and thought. Did I just say that? Do that? Be that?
The past few weeks I've been thinking about what walking in the Spirit means. What does it mean the walk in what the Holy Spirit has given me for today? He's given me a portion to do and a portion of comfort and help for today. But what am I doing with it? Am I walking in it? Not hording tomorrow's portion, scooping up manna that will mold by morning, but trusting that I have what I need for today?
This is all well, fine, good and easy with the tangibles like finances and cars, homes and roommates and spouses. But when it is applied to my soul and my sin, well, here the needs get blurred. I need to stop sinning, but rarely do I apply the Spirit to those besetting beasts. I'm more likely to rely on my own good works and white knuckles to beat the foxes back to their dens. I don't face the wildness head on with the Spirit and the gospel.
And I'll be honest: it lands me more humiliated in the end and not necessarily more sinless.
I'm learning more and more that the disciplines of this Christian life are not to reach some cycle of peace, some plateau of sinlessness. The discipline is to walk and walk and walk—to pilgrimage, my favorite psalm reads. To walk and walk and walk, to do it with faith and hope and love, to do it in victory and to do it in wild hopelessness. To seek and find the Holy Spirit, the comforter and helper.
Because on the inside we are wild, but He has loved us more wildly and ferociously still.