Monday, February 25, 2008

The youth minister murderer.

I recently read a story about a youth minister that confessed to a murder. Thirteen years ago, when he was 16, he had stabbed to death a convenience store clerk. He got away with it. Other than his friend that was there that day, no one would have ever known. But he felt convicted walking in a new life of faith and so he confessed.

I used to think that's how life worked. As long as you stayed away from God, you could avoid the consequences. You could fail and sweep it under the rug as long as you didn't tell God about it, but the moment you did, you would be swept away by the consequences. So, one of my favorite reasons to avoid God became that I didn't want to deal with the consequences of my actions.

The truth is a little different. The truth is that man dealt with the consequences for the last 13 years. I can't imagine the guilt and sorrow that haunted him over what he had done. I can't imagine he could drive passed a gas station and not feel pain. I can't imagine that confessing was the first time he dealt with the consequences of that murder.

Because the truth is, like Romans 6:23 says, "the wages of sin is death." Sin comes pre-baked with its own consequences. The minute that guy murdered someone, the second you lied to your boss, the instant you took something that didn't belong to you, consequences were born.

I've lived a lot of my life believing that verse read, "The wages of sin and being honest with God is consequences." But it doesn't say that at all. In fact, the second half of the verse is this: "but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Yes, consequences always come. In some form or another they storm the shores of our life. But the beauty of all of this is that God doesn't introduce or create or make the consequences. Instead, he shelters us from them, he walks us through them, he holds us in his hand and lovingly guides us through them.

When we confess to him, we involve the creator of the universe in righting our consequences.

And that, is an amazing thing indeed.


Anonymous said...

Good stuff as always.

Michael said...

Great post. It's so true. We get so caught up in trying to hide our sin that we forget that if we give it to God, he will throw it in the sea of forgetfulness.

Aaron said...

I've at times told a lie, or stolen, or whatever...and the guilt has killed me! I've learned it's not worth living with guilt and to just be honest. Thanks for the reminder.