Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Sin: Just Like a Spilled Drink

The other day, I had piles of coupons and papers to be filed lying on the kitchen table, along with my laptop.  My nephew put a glass on the table, poured himself a drink, and promptly knocked the glass over.  I just sat there and watched the drink quickly spread over the surface of the table, getting all of my coupons and papers wet.  As I looked on, the drink eventually reached my laptop and ruined it completely.

Don't panic. That's not what actually happened.  Here's what really happened:  As soon as my nephew knocked the drink over, I jumped up and started yelling at him.  I lectured him about how careless he was and about how much damage he had done to my things and how disappointed I was in him.   Meanwhile, the drink spread across the table and ruined my coupons, papers, and laptop.

Well, I'm sure you're on to me by now.  That is not what actually happened.  What really happened is exactly what you would expect.  I quickly jumped up, snatched my laptop up off the table, instructed someone to grab some paper towels, and started grabbing papers up off the table to keep the wet ones from getting completely ruined, and to keep the dry ones from getting wet.

The two previous scenarios seem ridiculous, don't they?  But it occurred to me that there might be a lesson to learn there.  I actually ended up learning two.

Lesson #1:  Sin in My Life; Sin in Your Life

The first insight I got out of this whole fiasco was in noticing how quickly I jumped up and started fighting against the stream of liquid heading toward things that were important to me. But when I see a sin trickling along in my life, do I jump up this quickly and fight this hard?  Or do I procrastinate in tackling it?  Or worse, just sit there watching it happen, wishing things were different, but resigning myself to it?  

What about when I see sin in other people's lives?  I'm not talking about walking around all plank-eyed and pointing out the speckled lives of my friends.  I'm talking about serious patterns of sin in the lives of my loved ones.  Am I quick to react with serious prayer and loving, but firm counsel and/or correction?  Or do I do nothing because I'm too worried about how it will affect our relationship?  Or worse, am I so wrapped up in myself that I overlook or forget about those loved ones' sins?

Lesson #2: Train 'Em Up

The other lesson I took away from all this is a short and sweet one.  Child training.  Just as in the scenario in which I did nothing and watched my things become ruined by a spilled drink, I can sit by idly and watch as sinful habits, behaviors, and attitudes grow in my children (and then somehow be surprised when they have become soaked by them).

On the other hand, I can become irritated by their sins and spend a lot of time lecturing them and showing my disappointment in them, while doing nothing to stop the spreading of the "spilled drink".  

Or I can take this lesson to heart, realize the life and death importance of fighting off the sins that creep in, and work with them... side by side... to clean up the mess.


Anonymous said...


RODS said...


James said...

Very good.

Btw, was it milk he spilt? Lol

Vikki said...

haha! Yes, and I'm STILL crying! :)