We recently installed granite in our kitchen. It is a lovely variegated stone with tans and creams and black. And while I absolutely love how the granite looks, I realized that there is now an awful lot that I can’t see. It is so good at hiding dirt that it is hard to tell that there is any unless you rub your hand across it and feel the gritty surface.
This fall has brought an onslaught of ants to our kitchen sink area and, like you may have already guessed, they are hard to spot on our new counters. They hurry and scurry across the surface, but I really have to look to find them in the multicolored granite. Now, when my counter tops were a single light color I could easily spot any insect invader.
Hmmm…those ants remind me of sins that go unnoticed in my life, if I am trying to live with one foot in the world and one foot out. When I am caught up in worldly passions and interests and am trying to mix it all up with my love for Christ and holy living, then I tend to minimize or not even notice the sin in my life. Instead of contrasting my sin against the purity of Christ, I compare my “weaknesses” and “flaws” to those of others. “I am not as bad as they are,” I say.
And you know what? When we compare our lives to someone else’s we always have a hard time finding our own sin. It’s there, but it’s like a little miniscule ant getting lost in the big world full of sinners. But when I look towards Christ, my sin all of a sudden shows clearly, like a giant spot of black grease on a white shirt.
I have been thinking about this a lot recently and, to tell you the truth, sometimes it can be overwhelming. When I compare myself to the purity of Christ it isn’t hard to see how and why I don’t measure up in God’s eyes in a thousand different ways. But that makes salvation all the more glorious! This is one reason it is so important to see my own sin clearly. But not only does this help me appreciate my Savior more, it also gives me an opportunity to show the world that there is victory over sin!
So many of us live in a constant state of defeat. We languish in bad habits and hurtful attitudes for our whole lives. Why?
*Eric Ludy says this: “We are so used to hearing futility, we are so used to hearing about the failure, and we know the failure in our own life, that we don’t believe in victory anymore.”
I believe that’s true.
But it is only by acknowledging sin that we can even begin the journey to victory. And sin, especially in the life of a Christian, can be subtle and hidden. Oh, God will show us if we are looking for it, but if we aren’t, it tends to get lost in our worldly lifestyles, just like the ants on my granite counter top.
May we be wholly devoted to becoming like Jesus. May we throw away our pride and our rebellion, so that we may instead be aware of the sin in our life, and then repent and grow as a believer. May we truly understand just how sinful we are so that we can better understand just how awesome our Savior is! And may we show a dying world that there is victory over sin!
I Corinthians 15:56-58 The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
2 thoughts on “Can you see that ant?”
This is so true and can be illustrated using many subjects. If you smoke, or work among those that smoke, you do not realize how bad the smell of cigarettes are until you either stop smoking or stop working or living among smokers. The longer you are away from the constant smell of cigarettes the worse the smell seems when you are around it. I used to work outside all summer and could be outside all day every day without any sunscreen and not get burnt. But now, a few hours in the sun and I am in pain. It is amazing how God made us so adaptable, and in many cases it helps us survive. But it can also be bad for us. Working out in the sun all day without sunscreen can damage your skin or even cause skin cancer. It is just that as we get used to the sun, we do not realize the damage it is doing to us. I work in a factory setting now and I must always be on my guard to make sure that I do not get used to certain language or behavior that is not edifying to Christ. Especially when it comes to people using the name of Christ as a cuss work or an exclamation point.
So true! And when it comes to things like work, it isn’t like you can (or should) change your surroundings. So that is when we need to rely on God to help us stay true to Him.