One such instance comes to mind: When I was in 3rd grade my mom took my siblings and I to our local grocery store to pick up a few things. That night I had a t-ball game and was really craving something sweet to eat during my game. My mom had said she was there to get some select items and not get us candy. Needless to say, when we bypassed the candy aisle my eye was drawn to those sweet snacks. My desire for a piece of candy overruled what my mom had said and what I knew to be right inside my heart. When no one was looking I took a piece of hard candy from the stash in the aisle…a small root beer barrel. That night at my t-ball game, I reached inside my pocket to get my stolen treasure but, to my astonishment, it had disappeared! Panic swept over me. Someone was going to find this piece of candy and I would be found out! As the panic played out in my head I realized that the best course of action would be to admit to my guilt. Maybe my punishment would not be so bad if I just openly confessed to my mother.
Indeed I was punished rightly for my wrong, but this incident led to a valuable lesson, one that did not just involve the obvious of not taking something that does not belong to you. The lesson was this, and it is the lesson that Scripture confronts us with time and time again: God’s standard of perfection for His people is unwavering and unattainable for us alone. We are daily reminded of how far we have fallen from this standard because of our sin. Thankfully, God’s grace is bigger than our failings and He still calls us to Himself to be His children. We can be free to confess our wrongs to God because He desires that we come to Him in all situations, our good, our bad, and our ugly, because He longs to restore us, forgive us, and set us free through His Word to us. Thanks be to God for this incredible gift! In the end, the feeling of conviction may not be bad after all as it is used by Christ to draw us to Himself and His freeing power.
Ben will be bringing a message from God’s Word to us this Sunday, June 14th