I don't remember where I first heard the following story. It is a humorous yet insightful commentary on human nature.
A new preacher began preaching in a small Kentucky congregation. In his first sermon, he condemned horse racing and the evils of gambling. Offended, one of the leaders confronted the young preacher afterwards saying, "Don't you realize that this area is noted for its fine horses and the Kentucky Derby? Many of the members in the congregation earn their living in the sport of kings."
The next week, the preacher spoke of the harmful effects of tobacco smoking only to incur the wrath of the tobacco farmers in the congregation.
So the following week he talked about the evils associated with whiskey. You guessed it, he was "informed" that the finest Kentucky bourbon was made in a distillery not five miles from the building and was a part of the local economy.
In frustration, he wailed "well, what can I preach about here?" The leaders told him, "Well, you can preach about the evils of pagan witch doctors. There ain't one of them within a thousand miles of here!"
The book of Hebrews says,
"For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do (Heb 4:12-13)."
There are times when the word makes a person comfortable. It challenges and re-directs our lives. It calls us to constantly make course corrections, some bigger than others. I remember as a child watching my Dad constantly moving the steering wheel back and forth in tiny motions while he was driving. I asked him why he did this, and he replied that if he just kept it straight without moving it, the car would wander off the road. In the same way, we as Christian constantly make course corrections based on the living and active word of God.
If we do not allow the word of God to challenge us to make minor course corrections, we will gradually wander off the path. Let us never be like the opponents of the prophets who said things such as, "No longer prophesy (Amos 7:13)!" or "Do not preach (Mic 21:6)!"
We can react to God's word in one of two ways. We can be as a cold, hard brick, unyielding. Or we can be as clay in the hands of the master potter, and let him mold us. Let us never be as Pharoah who hardened his heart so that he could not listen and heed to word of the Lord. Let us be as pliable as clay in the hands of our master!