I was fixing a quick dinner for my family of six - nachos. I know, I know, a really healthy and nutritious way to start off our New Year. As I dumped tortillas from the Tostitos bag into a pan, a quote on the back of the bag caught my eye, and made my heart sink. I knew it was just a marketing tool - one that seemed cute and catchy and innocent. But the message is so pervasive in our culture, that it seemed to be none of those. I took a quick photo and posted the quote on instagram, but my mind has continually mulled it over.
Just less than two years ago, we were the parents of only littles, and while somedays felt complicated with parenting, really our greatest challenge was potty-training, ABCs, and the occasional sass. But then we were literally thrown into the trenches of parenting a teenager - a half grown up child who has presented much more serious parenting challenges - issues we had not dreamed of tackling for years - when we ourselves were much more "grown up". We have learned that this parenting thing is no joke - it is hard - harder than we ever imagined. So, maybe it is because we are now parenting a teenager that the quote sunk into my heart, or maybe it is simply because it is just all wrong. I don't want my children to believe this lie, and I don't want to fall prey to it either.
BUT it is human nature.
That idea of hiding our sin goes all the way back to the garden of Eden. It is our natural tendency to hide it - to cover it up. Perhaps we think that it never happened if we can hide it (or it is like it never happened if we hide it so that no one catches us), or that we won't have to face the consequences if we cover it up. Without going into specifics in order to respect my son, I will say that this is the biggest area of discipline that we are facing. However, I know it is not just unique to our boy, as it is a big issue in my own life. We lie and cover up sins to protect ourselves and to protect our relationships. So many times we are caught in this cycle of sinning and then quickly lieing to cover it up, and the reasons we do this are vaster then I could ever write about in one little post.
The truth is, though, we can never really hide, and we have been freed from having to hide because of the gospel and Jesus. That should take our breath away and lift such a burden from our shoulders. We don't have to hide! This doesn't give us permission to sin, but being human and understanding the gospel makes us realize that we are all broken by sin, and we will continue to sin while on this earth. If we were perfect and didn't sin there would be no need for the gospel and Jesus. So when we inevitably do, we don't need to cover it up or hide. The good news is that Jesus absorbed all of our sin on that cross, and He is continually calling us out from the darkness of hiding into the light of His freedom. The gospel of Jesus promises the release from the bondage of sin - from having to hide. Rather, we are to confess our sins and find his mercy and grace.
We need to acknowledge our mistakes, our messes, our sins, and confess them. We are able to do this because the gospel promises forgiveness not judgement. God's beautiful grace allows us to have the confidence that we never have to fall back into hiding our sins. They have already been dealt with - the price has already been paid.
We've already been caught, and set free.