I have more than a few bad habits in my life.
One that tends to come and go is eating sunflower seeds. Man, they are good. You can buy them just about anywhere. A dump truck load of them is something like $2.00. I can just sit here and eat them all day. In fact I’m having some as I write this.
The downside(s)? I suck who knows how much salt into my body. They make me thirsty and all that water combined with all that salt makes me gain weight. And it’s pretty nasty when you walk in and find an overflowing cup of shells and a mess everywhere.
But worst of all, after a few days, that amount of salt basically burns your tastes buds off. It takes a while to recover. In the meantime, nothing has much taste. It takes everything else you eat and dulls it.
And yet every six months or so, I’ll buy a bag and have another go round for a week.And it strikes me that sin is just like this. Sin can feel great. The problem is sin makes me crave more sin, which makes me crave more sin, and so on. But the worst part is that it dulls everything in my life.
God came to give life. Life in abundance. When I sin, I put barriers between myself and God. If I’m not with God, I lose that abundance. Sure, I survive, but think of all I miss out on. All the things I do that go well? Think of how well they could have gone if sin wasn’t keeping me from God’s abundant life. The time with my family? Think how much more fulfilling it would be if I didn’t constantly sin. All the creative work I do? Think of how great it could really be if I wasn’t a sinner.
And to show God has a sense of humor, in the middle of writing this, I knocked of cup of shells into my lap. Nasty. Just nasty. Sometimes we keep our sin all nice and tidy, stored somewhere. And sometimes it comes spilling out in our laps for the world to see.
I know all this and yet I keep a bag of sunflower seeds within easy reach. I take no precautions to protect myself. It seems like such a good idea until I’ve gained five pounds in a week and can’t taste anything.