I remember countless times while I was a child when I would do something I was not supposed to do (I’m sure we can all remember these moments). Inevitably, there comes a time when we are caught. It’s not a matter of “if” they catch us, but more so the reality of “when” they catch us.
What happens when we are confronted? For me, as a child, I would usually revert to the next step that many children go to… lie. Why do we lie? Where did we learn to lie? I’m not sure the answer to these two questions. I would suggest, however, that one of the reasons we lie (even at that early age) is to deny what happened and not “own” our own junk.
We grow up learning that being honest is either not safe or not the way to go. Rather than admitting our mistakes, we choose the wrong route and lie, deny, point the finger, and never learn from the mistakes we made. We spend more time covering up or ignoring what we did and how we contributed to actually repenting of what we did.
It’s similar to Adam when God asked him why he ate of the forbidden tree. “It was the woman YOU gave me.” Really, Adam? You’re going to essentially blame God for YOUR own mistake? Eve plays a similar game when blaming the snake, which coincidentally God created.
We’re given the opportunity to come clean and repent of how we mess up. We read in Genesis of Cain and Abel. We see that God accepts Abel’s offering but does not accept Cain’s. Cain became very angry.
The Lord asks Cain why he looked so angry. God tells Cain that if he does what’s right, he will be accepted; if he refuses to do what’s right, that’s a different story. Notice it isn’t doing what’s wrong. We’re taught that sin is doing what’s wrong. But sin is as simple as KNOWING what’s right and NOT doing it.
Cain had the opportunity right there to repent. He could have taken a look at his heart and done the right thing. Instead, he kills his own brother.
Now, let’s just say that for the most part, most of us will not be faced with a situation similar to Cain in the whole “I-want-to-kill-my-brother” part. But murder aside, what is similar to Cain and us?
We all have junk. We’re all imperfect. Can’t escape this reality. We have an opportunity. I’d say we’re presented with this opportunity daily… perhaps several times a day. Are we going to pause, look at our own heart and sinfulness, and “own our own junk”… or are we going to go on and let our anger fester and lead to more sin?
Let’s learn how to say “My Bad.” Let’s own our own junk.