Yesterday my wife had an interesting encounter with our foster grandsons. Observing their conduct in Junior Church, as sometimes brothers are prone to do, she noticed some not so nice behavior between the two of them. So she took them aside giving them a firm but loving lecture and told them that they are two little boys she loves very much in her life and that she was very saddened they were acting this way towards each other and they need to love one another. This brought some tears to her eyes and then theirs. Can you say “breakthrough” !?
Anyway, after some apologies and a group hug hearts seem to be on the upswing and a great spiritual lesson was imbedded in their youthful hearts. As Nancy related the whole episode to me later I couldn’t help but think of how she handled it in a way that taught the boys something extremely valuable and at the same time reminded me of some great things about the Lord. Whenever we sin, God is deeply troubled too, even moreso than us because His emotions and hurt are bigger than ours. Paul wrote to his Ephesian brethren, “And grieve not the Holy Spirit, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption” (4:30). The Greek renders it literally “Stop grieving [or causing deep pain ] to the Holy Spirit” which tells us as Christians they were doing so, and in context touches on the fact that the area of their sin dealt with how they were talking ! I often use this verse as one evidence that your salvation is eternally secure for though they were sinning and conseqently causing great sorrow to God they were still “sealed” (or His property – as a seal in biblical times indicated such) ! But that aside, we must never forget our sin as His child, causes great sadness to our Heavenly Father, even those “little” remarks we make about others that constitute sin to Him but we slough as something less. In fact verse 29 says “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth. . .” or as Paul so eloquently puts it in the Greek “No trash talk !!”
And something else, Nancy told them they were two little boys that meant a great deal to her. She said there were no two boys she loved more. I think its safe to say that God feels the same about you as His child ! So it should move us to tears of sorrow whenever we pain Him and move us to repentance and a better determination to say and do the right things in the future. Now, of course we’ll falter but we must never stay down but confess and forsake wrong speech and actions whenever they occur and seek the help the psalmist did when he prayed “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my Strength, and my Redeemer.” (Ps.19:14). Its a rather tall order for any of us to always say and do whats right. Like those little boys, sometimes we’ll bicker with our brethren or say or do something thats downright mean and unkind. We are sinners still but this is the exciting thing, like Gram with those two little guys we can do better, we can walk away from our transgressions knowing God loves us very much and have the help we need to really learn from it and change !