Living Close to the Line

I open my email to see I’ve been hit with three “your-mailbox-is-over-its-size-limit” messages over the weekend. So I sort by size and delete a few messages that have “MB” rather than “KB” next to them.

I weed out just enough to keep working, knowing that the majority of the problem is not the odd 5 MB message but rather the hundreds of tiny 3 KB ones deemed “so small it’s irrelevant.”

Then, when I get sick of being nagged to empty my inbox every other day, I invest about 15 minutes deleting a whole bunch of tiny messages that I had considered too small to deal with. Why don’t I just invest that 15 minutes at the beginning of the process? I have a hundred excuses but no real reason.

This morning, those nagging messages got me thinking. I thought about other areas of life where people live as close as possible to the line — like credit cards. We might be thousands of dollars in debt, but every time we get a few hundred dollars paid off, we buy more shoes we don’t need and max the card out again.

Or what about driving as close to “just over” the speed limit as we dare?

urban scene with heavy traffic

Or arriving as late as we can to meetings? Or sinning as much in the “so-small-it’s-irrelevant” space as we dare? It’s like we give ourselves a “sin inbox.”

We let so much sin in until we reach the “limit.” Then our conscience nags us to repent, we confess just enough big “MB” sins to give us breathing space and quiet our conscience, rather than investing those 15 minutes to confess all our sin and clear our conscience completely.

Those little sins like gossip and ungrateful attitudes fill our “sin inbox” just as much as the big things like jealousy, pride, and lying.

So today, right now, invest 15 minutes in clearing our your sin inbox, because the limit God puts on space for sin in our lives is zero!

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. —1 John 1:9, NIV

Prayer: Jesus, we confess our sins to You today. Thank You for Your forgiveness. Please help us to sin less and live righteously for You.

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