Monday, May 3, 2010


Love covers a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:8 

By grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast Ephesians 2:8-9

I have an awful driving record. I’ve totaled a car or three and have built police stations with speeding fines. You’d think I’d be rehabilitated, but alas no.

I was approaching the intersection to turn into Walmart. I was just stopping in to pick up bread for a communion meal. As I come to the intersection, the lights go from red to green…except for the turn light which remained red. Out of habit, I focused on the green light and turned left. Immediately I realized what I had done: I just ran a red light. My first thought (not for my safety, ironically), was “Yea, no cops!” ½ a second later, I thought, “Oh, this intersection has those cameras!” ½ a second later I pray, “Lord, give me grace.”

How often this describes my sin life. Being a Christian forgives my sin nature, but does not exempt me from sinful behavior. Though my intention is sacred, my attention is scattered. Keeping with the law is good; keeping with the Lord is freedom. With sinful action I am not exempt from consequence and cost. My confession doesn’t remove my guilt, but it does bring it before the One forgives.

After sinful behavior, my first thought is: “Who was watching? Who will condemn me?” Then I am relieved to see that no one was around to “catch me in the act and charge me for my actions.” Oh, but there is the only One Who is ever right to judge the sins of my life – Jesus. Not to punish, but to teach. Lord, give me grace. Grant me what I don’t deserve, Your mercy.

“Do you know what you did?” “Yes, Officer, I do know.” “You know you have to pay the fine because there are consequences to shattering the standard, but the points will be removed from your record.” “Why, Officer?” “Because you acknowledged your wrong action and the Chief of Police has agreed to take on the ‘permanent record’ of anyone who confesses and accepts his forgiveness of all offenses. Whether or not you were intentional, the law remains broken and someone, either you or the Chief, has to reconcile it. Either he fixes your record for you, or you pay for it forever. There are no other options, and if there were, they wouldn’t satisfy fixing the broken law. These are not points of punishment, but options of forgiveness. ”

Wow. How much more am I apt to focus on such Giver of grace? How quickly do I forget the reality of grace and eternal costs?

Sin may seem like our minor infraction, but that’s because we are deceived into thinking its severity is based on our determination of “right and wrong.” Sin is not based on the moral mind, it’s based on the heart’s holiness. There are no “minor and major” offenses because there is no “minor or major” separation from Holiness. There is no “time served or parole based on crime severity or good behavior.” The penalty is death and we choose the ruling – “death already served or death for eternity.” This is a very real choice we all make. Ignore the citation, but someone still pays.

Most of us know the salvation, but forget the Saviour. Most of us pay the fine but forget the cost.

Lord, help me to know the severity of my sin to know the wonder of your grace.

Enjoy Him, Michelle


Anonymous said...

Great story! - L.S.

Debbie Griffith said...

Excellent! Loved the story-personal and then the dialogue with the Cheif Officer and the lesson and the blessing! LOVED IT!

Anonymous said...

GOOD JOB!! This was great, thanks for sharing it!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for that one, timely! I was reading Bonhoeffer yesterday - about cheap grace....your work was a modern equivalent! ;) Love ya!

Anonymous said...

Loved this.

DD said...

" The penalty is death and we choose the ruling – “death already served or death for eternity.” This is a very real choice we all make. "

Loved your way of saying it!!! Thanks!