I was standing at the kitchen sink washing dishes when my 6 year old son bolted through the door, ran past me into the bathroom and turned on the water. Intrigued I asked, “Chris, what are you doing?”
“I’m washing my hands Mom,” he replied.
My heart rejoiced! One of the life lessons we had been trying to teach our kids had actually broke through the wall of resistance.
As I began to thank God for this wonderful accomplishment, 4 year old Billy rushed in and joined Chris in the bathroom. Water continued to flow. Once again I asked, “What are you guys doing in the bathroom?” Seemingly annoyed they answered, “Mom, we’re washing our hands!”
I was so happy I began to sing! Both boys had learned this very important lesson of cleanliness. Hope rose. Maybe bath time wouldn’t be such a monumental task. As I finished washing the dishes, I began to dry my hands and I looked out the window.
Chief, our 130 lb German Wire Hair Pointer, looked strange. His black curly almost hair-like coat looked wet. His fur seemed to be stuck to his body.
Confused I asked, “Boys, why does Chief look wet?”
After a few moments of intense silence I heard, “We painted him.”
“Painted him? What did you ‘paint’ him with?” I asked as my heart rate increased.
“The stuff Dad has in the big metal can behind the little shed,” Billy answered.
All singing ceased. I put down the towel and rushed into the bathroom. The boys’ hands looked like they were coated with something similar to bacon fat. They were desperately trying to get the substance off their hands but the cold water and bar soap wasn’t working.
I called my husband. “Rob, what is in the big metal can behind the little shed?”
“Why do you want to know?” Rob asked.
“Please just answer the question,” I replied, obviously annoyed.
“Axle grease,” Rob said.
After explaining what happened, Rob told me Dawn dish soap would be the only thing to break down the grease and clean everyone up.
Cleaning the boys hands wasn’t easy but washing grease off the 130 lb. dog? Well, that was another story!
I thought the boys had absorbed a life-lesson but instead they were being mischievous. Even though they had no desire to intentionally hurt him, they had covered our innocent dog with grease. This act caused Chief to endure a bath he didn’t deserve or enjoy.
This is a simplistic picture of what Jesus has done for you and me.
Romans 3: 10-11 (NIV) 10 As it is written:“There is no one righteous, not even one;11 there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God.“
We sin and we have no power to redeem ourselves.
Ephesians 1:7-10 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he[d] made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.
Because we cannot save ourselves, Jesus willingly takes our sins upon Himself.
2 Corinthians 5:21 (NIV) 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin[b] for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
This intentional act caused Jesus to endure humiliation, arrest, conviction, torture, crucifixion, and death. Then defeating death, He paves the way for us to be with Him for eternity.
Jesus did nothing to deserve the wrath He endured on our behalf.
Don’t dumb this statement down! We deserve death. Jesus experienced death so we don’t have to.
And He did it all because He loves us.
John 17:24 NIV “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.”
Take a moment and absorb this fact.
Never forget the price paid on your behalf.
2 Corinthians 5:16-21 (NIV) 16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer.17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin[b] for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.