Monday, March 4, 2013

Lord, Free Me of Sin

The picture of the wall on this post is not "pretty."  It isn't supposed to be.  It is here to represent the thing that walls us off most fully from connecting with God, and that thing is unspeakably ugly.  It is so ugly that our Lord Jesus suffered an excruciating death to free us from it, to break through the wall of it, so we can enter the presence of God.

I am speaking, of course, of the wall of sin.  The thick, dark, grungy wall of sin.  The sin that separates us from God, darkening our minds to the light of Christ and causing us to flee from that light as we might from a searing blaze. 

Hopefully, we are not experiencing a wall that thick as we read this.  However, I daresay many of us have known it, at one time or another, and many live in such bondage today.  It can be hard to even want to get out of it.

Such a wall, can, in time, begin to feel comfortable.  We fool ourselves into thinking of it not as the place of danger it is, but as actually something of a "safe place."  If I cannot perceive God because of this wall, maybe it works both ways (I tell myself).  Maybe He can't see ME.  Maybe He'll forget all about me, and then He won't notice that I'm living in sin.  Maybe there isn't any such thing as sin; I mean, all I have to do is turn on TV to know that "social norms" seldom recognize its reality.

I can do a lot to hide that pesky wall.  Add a bright coat of paint, plant some ivy, maybe even put up a hedge so I don't see the wall at all, in time. Sin can be made to look quite attractive and normal.  Just a spray of denial and a dulling of conscience, and I'm all set.

Except that I'm not.  I'm not set at all.  I'm walled off from God; and in my moments of honesty, I am miserable. 

If I find myself in such a spot as I read this, I don't have to stay there.  If I am in serious sin, I daresay I know it.  I might have tried fooling myself, playing some "everybody's doing it" games in my head.  But I know.

The great thing is that I don't have to break down this wall myself.  There is a hole in it.  It is not a wide hole, but it's large enough for a person to get through.  It is a hole the size of a cross.

photo attribution

"Jesus, uttering a loud cry, breathed His last.  At that moment the curtain in the sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom."  (Mark 3-38)

"It is in Christ and through His blood that we have been redeemed and our sins forgiven.:  (Ephesians 1:7)

"If we confess our sins, He who is just can be trusted to forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrong."  (1 John 1:9)

Lord Jesus Christ, I confess to You that I am a sinner.  In particular, I ask forgiveness for these  transgressions___________.  I am so sorry.  If my sins have been grave, help me get to the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  Give me the strength to turn away from sin and temptation, and to avoid occasions that would lead me into sin.  Thank You for Your grace and mercy.  I ask You to break down any walls of sin that keep me from You.  Jesus, I trust in You.  Amen.

"I am more generous toward sinners than toward the just.  It was for their sake that I came down from heaven; it was for their sake that My blood was spilled.  Let them not fear to approach Me; they are most in need of My mercy."  (Jesus to St. Faustina)


This is part of a 'mini'-series' of posts on walls.  To continue in chronological order, click this line.