For shame

We went out to the store right after work, so I hadn’t had a chance to wash my hands. It was a relief to finally wash my hands in the men’s room, and I was enjoying the rinsing my hands in the rushing water when disaster struck and I managed to spray water on my pants.

It looked pretty bad.

I wasn’t able to stay in the store to compare shampoos with my wife. I wasn’t able to do much of anything except scoot out sheepishly, my hat covering my embarrassment. And so it is that though I was innocent of everything, my embarrassment was intense.

Compare this to the words from Daniel: “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” (Daniel 12:2) I think of those who are politicians, who have obfuscated and lied and deceived even themselves, who have harmed the reputation of others and who have led to the senseless deaths of others; I think of those who by graft or corruption or greed have caused the suffering of innocents, who have choked the planet, and those whose pride and arrogance have led them to shake the fist at God. And all men are guilty before God, guilty in truth. The only covering for our guilt is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

I was ashamed for something simple, something biological, and something that didn’t even happen. I was embarrassed in front of people like me, and people I didn’t know. Imagine instead the shame of having disbelieved God, of having dissipated a whole life in sin and ignorance and harm. Imagine being truly guilty, standing in front of a truly righteous judge. Innocently wet pants in front of strangers was quite sufficient for one not easily embarrassed. Such a fate would be worse. Ensure that your sins are covered, and sin no more.