I was walking on my way to the local coffee shop on Brookside the first week of November. As I was walking there I noticed something that I hadn't noticed in a long time. There was a box by the side of the Blockbuster on the corner of 36th and Peoria. I hadn't necessarily noticed it before, but for some reason on this day it stuck out to me.
After thinking about it for a second I realized that this was the very box that had sat out near the curb on the first weekend of October. On the box's side was an arrow drawn with the words "Garage Sale" underneath it. Obviously this was the high dollar advertisement that a local home had come up with for it's money making weekend.
It kind of caught me off guard because it was now the first week of November and that meant that this particular box has been sitting there for a month now. A month. Thirty days. No one has thrown it away. Not even the people who first put it there. No one has taken it. It hadn't even managed to blow into the street and get run over like many boxes have in the past. It did however somehow manage to travel from the curb about 25 feet until it reached the sidewalk along the Blockbuster though. And I bet it had been sitting there for close to three weeks now.
During that time it had rained, the wind had blown, people have walked by, and still no one had done anything to take care of this box that is no longer being used for anything. Us passerbys could use the excuse that we didn't put it there in the first place, so we shouldn't have to be the ones do anything with it. Or we could say that because it is next to Blockbuster's building that they should have to be the ones to take care of it. Yet they aren't responsible for it ending up there either. What to do? Right?
But I bet that all of us reading this article would assume that someone should do something to take care of it though. Who would agree that it should just sit there and take up space until it biodegrades and blows away? I confess that I stopped long enough to take a few pictures on my cell phone to post online, but not long enough to pick them up and throw it away.
So, what does that say about me? I'm writing about it, but didn't do anything about it. What does that say about everyone else who has walked by that same Blockbuster for a month and not thrown the box away? I mean there is literally a garbage can 20 feet away from the box!
I can get all upset about how we have let this poor little box sit there and collect dust, but there is a truth that is more important here than just the topic of littering.
That topic being sin.
I mean does this situation I've just described sound familiar to you at all? Isn't that kind of like us to let sin creep in closer and closer to the point where it can get comfortable and be forgotten about -- just like the box?
Sin might start out on the curb and be dropped off by someone else even. But after awhile it will drift closer and closer to us until it is sitting right up against us.
And it has done this in such a way that it might be with in us for a month before we even stop and slow down to notice it. How in the world could this happen?
Maybe because in life there are certain vices or behaviors that we just simply enjoy doing. We know it is wrong, we know it is bad, we know it won't help, but we choose to commit the sin anyways. We choose to willing make the mistake anyways. We ignore our inner voice, our conscience, the spirit inside us and mess up simply because we want to.
I think that this behavior is a struggle that every human being has. The struggle of knowing that we shouldn't do something even though everything about us at that time really, really wants to. We know the outcome won't be what we want, but reasoning and logic doesn't come into play at that point in the game. We choose to let the old garage sale box get closer and closer to us without even knowing that it is harmful and toxic to us.
It is kind of weird right? Have you ever noticed something like that happen to you in life? Is this a pattern that has become common for you? I honestly believe that we have to get rid of this cancerous behavior, people. We should desire for our lives to more holy today than they were yesterday. Why would someone not want to be better today than they were 24 hours ago? I know that is not the case for me.
Are you ready to get going then? Let's rid get of those darned, pesky old boxes that are just lying around and getting in our way.
Jay Sauser is a Student Pastor at Brookside Baptist Church.
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