By Emily Goss
There is a worn, green sign hanging from a chain-link fence that catches my eye at a local thrift store. The sign reads “Collectibles.” It is tattered and hanging sideways as if to mock the very word on the sign. Those must be some really special collectibles, I think sarcastically as I watch the sign billow in the wind. There is no trace of any expensive or rare item behind the sign. Only an old lawn mower and a plastic kid’s play set. The sign should really read “Junk.”
Do you remember having a special collection as a child? I loved collecting porcelain bunnies. I had flopsy, mopsy, and peter cotton tail. The books, nick nacks and stuffed animals decorated my cluttered room. And how I loved the Lisa Frank collection I had in middle school. The trapper keeper, stickers and pencil box were some of my most prized possessions. And who didn’t think Beanie Babies would be worth millions one day?!
As an adult, I find myself collecting less tangible and often less desirable items. Worry, anxiety and selfishness are often on display, as I take extra care to make sure they stick around. Entitlement and pride are kept under lock and key in my heart. I may not flaunt my collection but, if I’m honest, I kind of require them to “clutter my room.” I make sure to hide my collectibles and keep them in perfect order as to not draw attention to my sin, but I sure don’t want to throw them out completely.
Stress and anxiety are just a part of my day, I reason.
Everyone struggles with entitlement and pride, I rationalize.
It’s totally normal to lose it and let my anger get the best of me.
These are my collectibles... whether I like to admit it or not. My sin is concealed behind the chain-linked fence marked “Collectibles” and I need to call it what it is, “Junk.”
Proverbs 28:13 says, “People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.”
The issue of collecting sin is really a matter of find and replace. I need to replace the junk with something truly valuable. And the way I do this is by asking God to search my heart. Psalm 139:23 says, “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.”
It is vital that we pray this and make this the cry of our hearts. Because if we stay in denial over our sin, we cannot prosper according to the verse above. In order to receive mercy, we must confess what we know to be sin in our hearts. Even if it is a sin we kind of like. Even if it is one we’ve kept around for a while and at times find comfort in. God’s grace, love, and mercy is so much better than my collection of sin.
What is more valuable than my collection of sin? God’s word. Time with Him in His word is what I need to replace the junk in my life.
So, if you find yourself struggling with the same sin, take heart and take it to God. Confess your sin to the One who can forgive you completely.
1 Corinthians 15:57 says, “But thank God! He gives us the victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Let’s walk freely in this victory today because God is so gracious to forgive. Psalm 32:5 says, “Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.’ And you forgave the guilt of my sin.”
Take time right now, in the quietness of your own heart to do some internal spring cleaning, if you will. Ask Jesus to clean out the junk you may not even know you have been collecting and replace it with truth from His word. Let his forgiveness wash over you and refresh your spirit today.
Word of the Day
“People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.” Proverbs 28:13
Lord Jesus, search my heart and know it. Test me and know my anxious thoughts. I desire to replace my collection of hidden sin with a desire to know you more. Thank you that your Word promises that if I confess my sin, I will receive mercy. Amen.