When we have a sin that we nurse whether it be the likes of pride, greed, coveteousness, idolatry, or sexual immorality–whatever it is, it impedes our judgment. It is as if we are driving down the road of life drunk. The truth is we’re liable to injure or kill ourselves and any others that cross our path. But most of the time we are denial that such is the case. Like a drunk person, we think our judgment is fine enough to drive and so we get in the car.
In August, Shawn and I attended a late afternoon wedding. By the time we exited the banquet center, it was pushing on ten-thirty. On the sidewalk, we happened to fall in line behind a man who was stumbling his way toward the parking lot. He was swerving while walking. We were very uncomfortable with what was transpiring before us. I said to Shawn, “Surely he doesn’t plan on driving.” Well, we followed him because our car was in the direction he was headed.
He approached his sporty Cadillac and just leaned on it. Shawn asked him if he was okay and if he needed any help (which he obviously did). He rejected Shawn’s offer of help. So we got in our car and kept an eye on him. We saw him fumbling for his keys and attempting to unlock his car. I called 911. There was no way Shawn or I could in a good conscience let him drive away–if he could get into his car. We stayed in the parking lot until the police arrived and then headed home.
And so the story reminds me of what we are like in our sin. Whether we are addicted to fame or money or getting affirmation or porn or if we’re full of anger and selfishness and bitterness–whether we are physically lazy or too lazy to follow Jesus –sin impedes our judgment and leads to ruin if we do not repent.
To be free from sin, we need to repent and call it what it is, but we also need the help of trusted community to assist us in our freedom in Christ so that we do not return to slavery. Freedom will come even if little by little.
Let’s take sin seriously less we injure or kill ourselves or those around us. It is very possible that some souls will not recover from the injury we have done to them in ignorance (or with full knowledge). So if we are aware of our sin, let us cry out to God. If we are not, let us ask God to show us if there is anything in us that is damaging to ourselves or to others.