Wednesday morning I was in my usual hurry, so I pulled my SUV into an empty space at church. I opened my door and stepped out into a puddle-at least I thought it was a puddle. If only I had slowed down enough to take a good look before I took that first step! Anyway, as soon as my feet hit that puddle I realized (too late) that it was partially frozen. I stepped onto a wet, slippery, invisible mini iceberg floating in that puddle and down I went.
I didn't hear any bones snap or fabric rip as I gracefully (hah!) slid all the way down onto my left side. My dress pants and sweater got soaked and dirty, and I got embarrassed. Only one person saw it happen and I'm glad he was there actually. My friend, T. ran across the parking lot to rescue me. Thank You, Lord, for friends-gentle, loving friends like T. He didn't even laugh at me.
Later, as my Bible study group discussed King David's fall into heinous sin, the image of my missed step, slip, and slide were vivid in my mind. I understood with new clarity how King David let one little step lead him into an uncontrolled slide down the path of lust, adultery, deceit, cover-up, and murder.
My little misstep this morning took me much lower than I wanted to go and it all happened much faster than I thought possible. And that nasty little fall left me filthy, wet, sloppy, messy. A little sore, and a lot embarrassed.
I think the word humiliation goes right here.
David's one little sin did the same for him, didn't it, Lord?
And sin will do the same for me. One little selfish choice can lead me down a path I really don't want to take. Lord, keep me from making those selfish, stupid, little choices that can send me sliding into the nasty mud hole of sin. I beg you to stop me when I come anywhere near making those kinds of choices. I don't want my relationship to You covered in mud.
If only you had stopped to look at the ground BEFORE you stepped out of your vehicle, Little One. If only you had remembered those warnings you've heard over and over again about black ice. If only you had picked a different, dryer place to park. If only...
Sin does more than drag you through the mud, Little one. If fills you with regret. It keeps you dissatisfied and wondering, "If only..." about your life.
And it's so hard to pick yourself up, scrape off the dirt, and start all over again, isn't it? Good thing a faithful friend was there to pick you up and set your feet on solid ground that morning.
A little like what Jesus did at Calvary, don't you think?