by Stephanie Olson, Set Me Free Ministries Co-founder
We have a wonderful, spoiled, four-legged family member. Remi, a beautiful yellow lab who just turned one year old has captured our hearts like nobody’s business. It’s amazing how a dog can have five people so tightly wrapped around her little paw.
Remi has had a kennel from the time we brought her home. That kennel was where she slept at night when she was growing up, it was her comfort when we were gone, and it was (and still is) where she went when she knew she had done something naughty.
The other day I left the house briefly, and when I returned, Remi was in her kennel looking at me with very guilty eyes while chewing on one of my daughter’s puppets. She knew exactly what she was doing, and she knew that what she was doing was wrong. Fortunately, the puppet wasn’t hurt, and I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw her, knowing that she was trying to make the naughty behavior a little less naughty because she was punishing herself as she was doing it. Oh boy!
And then I realized how often we do the same thing. How many of us do something we know that God calls sin, and yet we continue to do it? Perhaps we hide out in our “kennels,” feeling shame, and yet, we continue to sin. I know I’ve been there.
But look at what 1 John says: “If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.
"My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” (1 John 1:6-2:1)
Precious ones, we don’t have to hide in the dark to cover our sins. We have an Advocate who helps us walk in the light! True, we have to overcome that temptation and say: Even though that “puppet” looks wonderful to chew on right now, I will not pick it up through the power of the Holy Spirit! But we don’t have to overcome that temptation in our own power.
We don’t have to battle sin on our own! When we surrender our sins to our Advocate, Jesus Christ, we can battle sin through His power; however, we have to be willing to say no to our sin. Hiding in our kennels doesn’t work. Allow God to cleanse you through His covering blood and walk in the light! Hide no more!