“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” -Hebrews 12:1
What sins have you broken? What secret, small transgressions have you tamed to make your own? A privacy fantasy? A daydream you’ve shielded from the scrutiny of the Spirit?
I had a friend in college who enjoyed gossiping with one particular classmate. She wasn’t loose with her tongue with anyone else. But, oh, did the classmate get an earful! My college friend thought she had housebroken her gossip, made it domesticated and respectable.
The major problem with our minor offenses is that we tend to whitewash them, thinking that they are not all that offensive to God. If you are harboring small sins in an attempt to housebreak them, tenderize your heart with this advice:
—We are too apt to forget that temptation to sin will rarely represent itself in its tru colors. Never when we are tempted will we hear sin say to us, “I am your deadly enemy…I want to ruin your life.” That’s not how it works. Sin, instead, comes to us like Judas with a kiss. It comes to us like Joab with outstretched hands and flattering words. Sin, in its beginnings, seems harmless enough—like David walking idly on his place roof which happened to overlook the bedroom of a woman. You and I may give wickedness smoothsounding names, but we cannot alter its nature and character in the sight of God.
“Help me to throw off today any sin that entangles. Forgive me for trying to minimize my sin by making excuses for it. Help me to see my sins, great or small, as things that deeply offend You. For the sake of Christ, keep me from ever becoming entangled again.”
—Diamonds in the dust by Joni Eareckson Tada