“But we are all like an unclean thing [garbage], and all our righteousness are like filthy rags;” Isaiah 64:6a
“Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.” Psalm 51:2
I heard a story of a 10-year-old boy named Jimmy who went to his grandparents’ home for dinner. The home was filled with a sweet chocolate scent as the homemade cake cooled in the kitchen. The delicious chocolate cake was all Jimmy could think about. He gobbled down the chicken dinner but pushed the spinach and potatoes to the side with his fork. Grandma seeing Jimmy’s dislike of the vegetables says, “Jimmy, you can have some chocolate cake and ice cream if you eat all of your spinach and potatoes.” She picked up her plate and went into the kitchen.
Grandpa looked at Jimmy and said, “Just take a bite of each Jimmy then pass them to me and I’ll eat them for you so that you can enjoy the cake.” Jimmy grinned and took a bite of each and scooped his plate of vegetables onto his grandpa’s plate. Grandpa quickly ate his grandson’s vegetables before grandma came back to the table. Grandma enters the dining room and says, “Jimmy, did you eat all of your vegetables?” Jimmy shyly glances over at Grandpa who replies, “Yes he did. Give Jimmy a big slice of cake and two scoops of ice cream.” Jimmy was thrilled that he did not have to eat his vegetables and was able to have lots of yummy dessert.
Five years later, Jimmy is now fifteen years old. His parents are having dinner at his grandparents’ home while discussing the problems they are having with Jimmy. He is constantly getting in trouble at school and his parents don’t know what to do with him because he is constantly lying. Perhaps it was the Holy Spirit that reminded Grandpa of the nights that Jimmy would come over for dinner and he would eat Jimmy’s vegetables. Grandpa realized that lying to Grandma showed Jimmy that it’s okay to lie as long as you get what you want. He immediately felt horrible with a knot in the pit of his stomach. He chose to confess how he had lied to Grandma and asked her and the family to forgive him. That night, he went to the Lord in prayer and asked Him to forgive his deceitful ways. He remembered Proverbs 12:22, “The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy.” He asked the Lord to cleanse him and to help him talk to Jimmy about lying that next day.
Prayer: Dear Lord, thank You for forgiving us when we confess our sins. Sometimes, we may think that what we are doing is helpful at the moment. Yet, being deceitful tends to have a snowball effect. One tiny little lie keeps rolling larger from one person to the next as other lies are compacted with the first. Lord, when we find ourselves in a place of deceit, help us to turn to You as You cleanse and melt away our sins. Help us to be trustworthy so that You may delight in us. In Jesus’ Holy name. Amen