Sunday, March 15, 2009

Shrinking Sweater Vests and Sin

"We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God." 2 Corinthians 5:20-21 (NIV)

I was trying to do the right thing. My intentions were so good. My sweet hubby was preparing to go on a trip. I wanted to make sure that he had everything that he needed...that all his laundry was clean. I noticed that the sweater vest he had on had a little spot on it...now, my man loves his sweater vests...and this was one of his nicest. I threw it in the wash and went about my other "busy-ness." It was bedtime when I headed to put the load in the dryer. I didn't even think about checking to see if any needed to be hung up to dry. I fluffed the clothes this morning...wanting to put them on his suitcase so he didn't forget them. I got them out to fold them. The first item I picked up was the vest. It was pretty small. :( Now, my man has lost a lot of weight, but I don't think he's lost any height. I am grieving over that sweater vest. I dread telling him. But, you know what? He'll hug me. He'll forgive me. I know that I'm much more important to him than an item of clothing.

As I agonized over my mistake...my carelessness...even to the point of feeling a little sick in my tummy, I was convicted of something. How often do I grieve over my sin...my mistakes in my Christian walk...my carelessness with my responsibilities as "Christ's ambassador"? How often do I pray, "Forgive me for my sins" without regard to the pain that sin caused my Savior?

I want to do the right things...to honor Christ, to serve Him, to obey. My intentions are good...but I often fail. It may be outright sin (sins of commission)...gossip, wrong thinking, jealousy, unforgiveness, selfishness...or less easily observed sin (sins of omission)...times that I just don't obey and do something that God has clearly called me to do. I need to be more cognizant of the price that was paid...and be more intentional in my confession. What Amazing Grace has been shown...grace that "saved a wretch like me."

And what freedom is found in the realization that "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." 1 John 1:9 (NIV) Yes, our Abba, Father will wrap His arms around us. He has already proved the depth of His love for us.

It is my prayer to forego the grief...on my part and His...and to "not let [His] Book of the Law depart from [my] mouth; [to] meditate on it day and night, so that [I] may be careful to do everything written in it. Then [I] will be prosperous and successful." Joshua 1:8 (NIV) And that prosperity and success are not in regard to money or fame...but as His ambassador...His chosen one. He is the one who "bestow[s]...a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair." I want to "be called [an] oak of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of His splendor." Isaiah 61:3 (NIV)

Lord, thank you for grace that is greater than all my sin! Lord, stop me in my tracks when I disobey! Convict me and draw me to Your throne for forgiveness. Don't let me be complacent in regard to my sin. Help me to keep Your Word on my lips...in my mind...on my heart. Help me to be careful in my obedience to you. Thank you for Your love that never fails...even when I do.

4 comments:

hope42day said...

Kristi,
I have been there as well! It hurts deep because good was intended. I love your prayer at the end. Thank you, again, for an encouraging and wonderful post.

Carrie said...

Mom,

You have such a precious heart and spirit...thank you so much for sharing what God leads you to see. Yet, again, this is another struggle that you and I share...stressing the small things and forgetting what is really important. Thank you for being so open about what God whispers into your heart...because through you, He whispers to me. You are one of the greatest blessings He has ever given me! I love you and miss you!

Your Carrie

Jeannie said...

Kristi,
Glad to know I'm not the only one who "fluffs." :)
Good lesson!

Love you!!!

Jean said...

Amen!

Jean