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Runaway People
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Have you ever run away from home? When you were five or six years old perhaps you were mad at your mom for making you clean your room, or maybe you were upset because of something your dad said. You decided you didn't like your family anymore and threw some things in a bag and headed out the door. Maybe you made it to the end of the driveway, or even as far as a friend's backyard. But after a while you forgot why you were mad, got hungry and went home.

I'm outta here

When our plane landed in San Antonio, Texas, my friend and I were more than 1,500 miles from home. We were running away because we were tired of our parent's rules and we hated school. We thought being 16 years old meant you could quit school, find a job and be fully independent. It took two months to learn otherwise.

The National Network for Youth suggests that approximately 1 to 1.3 million young people run away from home each year. The reasons vary. Some teens are in abusive situations at home. But some run away from good homes because they want to be free from their parent’s restrictions. In every case there is a communication breakdown of some kind that prompts a teenager to think their problem is unsolvable. So instead of facing life—they run away.

I ran away from home twice before I realized I was only complicating my life. At some point I had to face my frustrations and figure out how to resolve them.

The temptation to run

Teens aren't the only ones who runaway! Adults do too. Sometimes difficult tasks, illness, dysfunctional relationships, financial burdens and more, make running away an attractive option. Husbands and wives abandon each other. Disgruntled employees walk off the job. It seems easier to run from a problem than to have to face it. But what we fail to resolve usually comes back later to haunt us.

If you drive north on Interstate 5 from southern California, just before you reach the San Joaquin Valley, you'll descend through a pass (a 7% grade) known as the Grapevine. Experienced truckers use a combination of brakes and gears to help them keep their rigs from going too fast. Occasionally when a driver loses it, he or she heads for a runaway truck ramp that's designed to help them stop. Once they hit the ramp they know they're okay.

Just as runaway truck ramps save out-of-control vehicles, so the cross saves runaway people. All who run to Jesus find relief from the destructive momentum of sin. Jesus said,

"And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself" (John 12:32). What a relief!

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By Rich DuBose. Copyright © 2014 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE ®

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