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Friday, December 28, 2012

Caution Contents Hot!

Our daughter gave me a beautiful purple and white insulated mug for Christmas. It is porcelain with a silicon top that says “Caution Contents Hot.” I laughed when I read it. There were no contents except for the packing paper. Definitely nothing hot . . . yet. (I used it for my morning coffee today. And yes, I like my coffee hot.)

You’ve probably opened other gifts or other packages with plastic bags, which warn: “Keep out of reach of small children. Do not place over head.” And, of course, “Small parts. Do not swallow.”

I got a new food processer years ago. I was reading the instructions, as the brand was new to me. It said, “Do not touch the blade. It is sharp and could cut.” I was laughing. Yeah, the whole reason I buy food processors is because the blade is sharp and it cuts!!! Do you know what I did? When I had it all apart in sudsy water for its first wash before use, I put my hand down into the water and . . . sliced my finger! That’s why they have those dumb warnings! For people like me!!!! (And to keep the company from being sued by dumb people like me, who forget to be careful with a sharp blade.)

Probably some of those warnings are necessary. I’m sure you’ve known a child who swallowed a LEGO or stuffed something up his nose and had to be rushed to the hospital. Maybe you burned your tongue on too-hot coffee or tea. Or maybe you—like someone I know too well—cut your finger on something that’s supposed to be sharp.

When we read warnings, we have several options:
  1. We heed them.
  2. We laugh at them.
  3. We forget them. 

There are consequences for both ignoring (cut fingers!!!) or heeding (happy fingers!). Some are pleasant, and some, not so pleasant.

All through the Bible, we see God warning His people. If you obey, you will receive blessing. If you disobey, you will be judged. There are always happy and sad results. The people’s actions determine the outcome.

And so it is today. God warns us. Here are just a few warnings from the New Testament:
  • Flee from idolatry--anything that replaces God. (1 Corinthians 10:14)
  • Withdraw yourself from discontent and the love of money. (1 Timothy 6:5-10)
  • Flee fornication. (1 Corinthians 6:18)
  • Flee also youthful lusts. (2 Timothy 2:22)

Following the warnings are the consequences of sin. In most of these passages, God gives us alternative actions to do instead of these negative things. 

When we heed God’s wise cautions, we will live purposeful, joyful lives. If we choose to sin, we pay the sad consequences and miss some of His blessing. We also hurt others.

Just like with package warnings, we can do what we like with God’s warnings. We can ignore them, laugh at them, or heed them.

Let’s obey God’s caution labels!

Do you have any “caution label” stories you would like to share? I’d enjoy hearing them!


  1. I'm sure I've LOL at various caution labels and, of course, I can't remember them now, but the spiritual message is so true. Why don't we just follow the warnings in God's word? Why do we constantly ignore His words of wisdom? I've got no good answer! Thanks for the reminder to "obey." As the song says, Trust and Obey, for there's no other way .... so true!

    1. Thank you for your comment. Glad you laugh at labels, too. (It helps to have company!) But, yes, we need to heed God's warnings.

      Have a Happy 2013, Sandra!


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