Don’t grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. (James 5:9)

Don’t grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. (James 5:9)I PUT ON A PUPPET show for my sisters who had a bedroom across the hall from me as a child. They got a kick out of my antics. The show, starring my stuffed raccoon puppet, was going on without a hitch. The only problem was that I was supposed to be in bed. What I couldn’t see was that my dad was sitting on the steps, just out of view. He came out of nowhere and quickly disciplined me.

Because we can’t see our heavenly Dad, we sometimes forget that He’s there. In our minds we know it. If anyone asked, we would confidently say that “He’s right here in the room.” Yet the fickle and wayward heart of even devoted Christians can give way to forgetfulness.

We sometimes begin to act like I did while putting on that puppet show, and subconsciously believe we’re free to do as we please because Dad is out of sight. We reason that since He doesn’t intervene the moment we do wrong (for example, grumbling with our spiritual siblings), we think we’re going to get away with it. Whether we can see, feel, or hear God, He is there—right there at the door. His discipline is always given in love, but it’s still painful. The best option is to remember He’s there and live like it.

Today, act as if God is watching how you interact with others.

Neal Eckert lives in Michigan with his loving wife and seven young children. He staff writes full-time for a hunting and fishing organization.

© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.