Yesterday I spoke at church on the topic, "The Reality of Sin." I had some thoughts that I didn't share in the message that I still wanted to get down.
Friday afternoon I walked out back to take garbage to the alley. The backyard is Stitch's bathroom, so the white snow that was still on the ground made his dog piles pretty obvious. After getting a plastic grocery bag from inside I started the wonderful task of picking up after him. Late at night when I let him out I don't go out with him because of the Chicago cold, which is also reason enough to let things go for awhile with a "I'll pick it all up later." Seeing the brown/white contrast Friday afternoon - it was time to pick things up. It didn't look like much though. Upon starting I realized it was going to have to wait a little more. Frozen poopcicles are difficult to break free. I knew 50 degree weather was coming Satrday, so I decided to leave things for one more day.
Saturday afternoon Jeannette, Baylee, and I were going to go to Lincoln Park Zoo to enjoy the first nice day in a long time. We were outside ready to go when I remembered about the backyard treasures. "Let me go and pick these up really quick, there wasn't a lot yesterday."
By this time on Saturday, around 1pm, most of the snow had melted. Snow that had been covering up probably over a month's worth of Stitch's squattings. There was a LOT! There was definitely more than what I saw on the surface Friday. I literally almost filled a plastic grocery bag. Not fun, not pleasant.
My little backyard experience brought the reality of sin home to me in a real way:
If I would pick up after Stitch immediately I wouldn't have a bigger mess to deal with later.
Isn't that just how the junk in our life is also? If I'd just deal with things, not leaving them to the mercy of lame excuses, I'd have less of a mess to deal with later.
But no - I left things. Had a huge, disgusting mess to clean up, holding back a gag reflex at times. Had to wash my hands. Made Jeannette & Baylee wait for me, missing out on part of our planned fun.
Disgusting. And experienced because I didn't just take care of things immediately, when I knew they needed to be taken care of.
Romans 7 is a great passage to read in regards to our struggle with sin. I'd suggest you check it out, especially verses 14-25. Here's my paraphrase of verses 24-25:
What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this backyard of disgustingness? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!