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Daily Devotional for February 23, 2017

Read: Proverbs 4:1-9; Ephesians 6:1-3

Bible version changes do not affect the Key audio or "Today's Key Verse," below.

Brendan and his friends drew a large chalk circle on the driveway. "What's that for?" asked Dad as he came out of the garage.

"We're playing hide-and-seek," said Brendan, "and this is the safety zone. If we're found, we're safe if we can reach the safety zone before getting tagged."

After a while the kids began to leave, and Brendan ran over to his father. "Dad," he said, "everybody's going to Michael's house to watch a movie. Can I go too?" Dad asked Brendan a few questions about the movie they were going to watch, then shook his head. "But, Dad!" said Brendan. "What's wrong with it? Declan goes to our church, and he gets to watch it."

Dad thought for a moment. "The game you were playing can help me explain," he said. "Think of Satan as being it' in your life. Your mother and I help protect you from him by drawing some boundaries. We set limits on what you can do--that's your safety zone. We include good things within your safety zone and leave things that are definitely bad outside the boundaries we set for you."

"Like swearing and smoking and doing drugs?" asked Brendan.

"Yes, those things are definitely not allowed in your safety zone. But between the very good and the very bad, there's a whole range of activities the Bible doesn't specifically talk about," explained Dad. "Mom and I consider them, and then at some point we draw a boundary line and say, This is as far as you can go.'"

"And the movie the guys are going to watch is beyond my safety zone?" asked Brendan. "Then why does Declan get to see it?"

"Other parents may draw boundaries at different points," said Dad. "Some things we consider poor choices may not be wrong, but we have to decide where the line is for us."

"And Satan can't get me if I stay inside the boundaries you set?" asked Brendan.

Dad smiled. "I wish that were true," he said, putting an arm around Brendan's shoulder as they went inside. "But boundaries can't keep him out entirely. He doesn't have as much freedom within the boundaries, but you need to depend on Jesus for complete protection from Satan." Cynthia Y. Powell

Have you wondered why your parents won’t let you do certain things? They’re not trying to be mean to you. They know that Satan is a powerful force in the world, and God has given them the responsibility to set boundaries for your safety. Obey God by obeying your parents and staying inside your safety zone.

TODAY'S KEY VERSE: 1 Peter 5:8 (KJV)
The devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
*Verse displayed is NKJV

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