There comes a point in many parents’ lives when they get some disturbing news:
Their child has committed a grave sin.
Or perhaps has been the victim of a grievous evil.
Situations such as these can be emotionally intense and complicated; I urge you to consider whether pastoral or professional help is needed. Unraveling the underlying issues, the implications, the repentance, and/or the healing is often a lengthy process.
I don’t hope to plumb the depths of those matters today. God has placed one goal on my heart: to offer hope.
I’ve been there. I’ve felt that empty-and-hollow yet somehow full-of-butterflies feeling in my stomach over discovered sin…
the almost-physical ache over the state of our sinful world and the state of man’s sinful heart from which I’m not excluded.
Nor are those I love.
I’ve experienced the agonizing realization that things will never be the same.
And here’s what I’ve learned:
1.)Discovering sin is a sure sign that God is at work. Those entrenched in sin will endeavor to keep it hidden at all costs. Jesus Himself said:
Everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. (John 3:20)
Left to the natural state of things, sin will remain hidden. And so when sin is discovered, we can give thanks to God Himself for casting aside the veil of darkness with His merciful hand and bringing it to light.
2.)Discovering sin is a gift of grace. It sure doesn’t feel like grace, does it?
But it is.
When sin remains hidden, its growth can explode in a way that pervades every aspect of a person’s life, radically changing his very nature.
But when sin comes to light, it can be dealt with. Conversations can be had; counseling can be sought; lifestyles can be changed; God’s Word can be searched; hearts can be softened; restitution can be made; restoration can be achieved.
But none of this can occur until the sin is brought to light.
So how can that be anything except grace?
We’re also reminded that as parents we’re desperately dependent on God for wisdom beyond our years. For discernment beyond our experience. For peace beyond our understanding.
If we’re wise, we will also hear and answer the call to fall to our knees in prayer on behalf of our children. We will lift them up before the God who made them and loves them and has great plans for them, and we beg Him to work in their hearts. To convict. To restore. To heal. To purify. To renew. To resurrect.
And we can get up from that place of prayer in full hope and confidence that in His way, in His time, He will answer.
Written by Jennifer Clarke