Sometimes when you have the best of intentions and begin to confess old sins, you bump into resistance and stall out. It’s like cleaning the garage that I mentioned in the last post. You may spend a couple of hours in there and start to make headway, but then you give up and tell yourself you’ll get to it later.
When it comes to putting things right with other people, we can find many reasons to put it off for another day. What is it that stalls us out?
1. Pride stalls us out. If we confess our sin to our friend, we tell ourselves, then they will look down on us. It will blow their image of us. What will they think of us?
2. Fear stalls us out. We might lose our job or our standing or our position. The consequences are just too great.
3. Laziness keeps us from confessing. It’s just too much trouble, and it will take too much time.
4. The cost is too great. If we confess our sin, we might owe a hefty amount of money that we don’t have. Continue reading ‘Resistance’
This post is in answer to a comment/question addressed to Bekah on her post called “A Little Moralizing.” Here’s the question: How do you take care of old (unconfessed) sins that go back several years?
I think it’s very helpful to sit down with a pen and paper and just write them all down. One at a time. Name them the way God does. It’s amazing how many other things might come to mind as you do this. But just keep writing until you can’t think of any others. Now remember, these are the sins you have not yet put right. I am NOT saying to write down all the sins you already took care of. What a drag that would be.
Next sort them out. For example, let’s say you listed about five different times you were unkind to your mom. Sort them into the mom pile. Do the same with everything. Many of these sins will require a phone call or an email or a letter of apology. Maybe all of them will. Don’t get discouraged or distracted by the size of the pile.
After sorting them out, you must seek God’s forgiveness for each offense. Something like this: “Lord, I was unkind to my mom last spring when I told her to quit calling me. I was disrespectful and I dishonored her, which I know you hate. Please forgive me.” Go through the list even if it takes a while. Then when you’re finished, ask God if there are any more. If more come to mind, add them. If nothing else comes to mind, then thank God for His mercy and forgiveness. Continue reading ‘Confessing Old Sins’
God loves new beginnings, have you noticed? And we, being His creatures, do too. Why are the stores going to be filled with cleaning and organizing supplies in January? Because we like to clean up, throw out, rearrange, and start over. Again. We are not being bad when we do this. Well, most of the time we are not being bad. I have thrown out or sold a few things over the years that I shouldn’t have. But we won’t go into that. Those bad things have since been forgiven. So I am starting fresh, a wiser woman for it.
We all want to put our best foot forward on the first day of the brand new year. But I guarantee you that we are all bound to trip up in some way sooner than we would like. But we must, absolutely must, remember that God washes us and forgives us anew every day, when ever we ask for it. We don’t have to wait for a new day or a new week or a new month or for a new year to start over. We don’t have to be bummed that we already broke a couple of new year’s resolutions before noon on day #1. God doesn’t care about our new year’s resolutions. He cares us about us looking to Him for our salvation, our repentance, our faith, our growth, our sanctification. Everything. And He is there for us 24/7. “Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable gift” (2 Cor. 9:15).
So here’s a little something that you didn’t actually want to know about. I stepped on a piece of glass the other week. Just a tiny little shard – I didn’t even notice it when it happened.
Yes, I know you’re gripped. Dying to find out the end of this story. “Did she get it out I wonder? Did she find the tweezers?”
Well no as a matter of fact. I kinda vaguely knew there was something in my foot but I only noticed it if I stepped on it in just the right way. I was busy. It’s Christmas. And finals week. And all that. I didn’t even have time to actually let this little glass shard bubble up into my conscious thoughts. I sort of figured I would leave it alone and it would work itself out. Plus it’s in one of those awkward corners of the foot which you can’t get a good look at, no matter how you contort yourself.
Don’t worry. I’m coming to a point. As dramatic as this all is, and as much as this is a worthy tale in its own right, I’m working up to a metaphor so bear with. Continue reading ‘Some Moralizing’
They’re on their way to your house, even now, and who knows what visions of sugar plums are dancing in their heads. Are they imagining the big greeting, the fresh flowers in their bedroom, and their favorite meal just coming out of the oven? Days of sleeping in, waking up to fresh coffee brewing, lounging over breakfast, visiting old friends, and hanging out by the fire doing some pleasure reading?
Meanwhile, what are your expectations? Are you counting down until you have a little more help around the house? Maybe you’re looking forward to having someone wrap that pile of presents you have stuffed in your closet and finish your last-minute errands for you. And you are positively giddy with joy over handing off the kitchen clean-up duties. And then you’re expecting lots of heart-to-heart talks and one-on-one time.
So what could go wrong with this impending collision of expectations at Christmas? And what can we all do to avoid such an unnecessary collision? Here are a few ideas.
1. Review your expectations, whether you are Mom welcoming home your kids or you are the kids traveling home. Have Continue reading ‘Home for Christmas’
Have you ever seen those ill advised cupcake sprinkle applicators? I think they made them for children, and I feel like they may or may not have been an As Seen on TV product. I just remember stopping at Michaels by some kind of a plastic contraption that you insert a cupcake into and then in some way generate a windstorm of sprinkles and some of them stick to it, and marveling at the badness of the idea. I really wish I had paid more attention to how the thing worked because at this very moment I think I may be stuck inside one. Continue reading ‘Joy to the Whirled!’