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Little Chunks Are Big Nightmares

Dead flies cause the ointment of the apothecary to send forth a stinking savour: so doth a little folly him that is in reputation for wisdom and honour. Ecclesiastes 10:1

I love building things with wood, and I do it as often as time will allow. On one occasion, as I was building a farmhouse table, I found myself in a position where I wished I had an extra two or three hands. I was holding a piece of wood at an awkward angle and trying to hold it just long enough to get a nail into it with my nail gun. Either I missed my mark horribly, or the nail hit a knot on its way in because it only took a split second to realize that the nail had shot out the side of the piece of wood and into my thumb. It hurt, and it bled a little, but it was not bad enough that I couldn’t finish the job. Over the next couple weeks, though the wound began to heal, I noticed that I had no ability to grip anything with that thumb without a lot of pain. With a pair of tweezers and a sharp object, I dug down into that thumb. I certainly felt the pain as I dug, but I found a small chunk of wood that had been forcefully placed there by that nail gun. The relief was instantaneous!

The wound began to heal again, but I still noticed the inability to grip with that thumb. I convinced myself that it just needed to heal, so I left it for weeks. But the pain lived on. So, once again, tweezers in hand, I began the excruciating trek into the soft tissue of my thumb. My journey finally came to an end when I landed on another small chunk of wood that I had missed the first time. Though the pain was intense, I was driven to extract it. It took a lot of poking, and pulling, and prying, but it finally succumbed to my determination. Thankfully, my thumb is healed up and those chunks of wood are just memories.

Those tiny chunks of wood are much like the sins many consider to be small sins. It’s not murder, robbery, or adultery so we think it’s okay. However, those sins are a detriment to our holiness before God. Just because something is not too bad does not mean that it is not bad. As is stated in Ecclesiastes 10, a small fly in the ointment can cause the whole thing to stink. So a small sin can ruin a relationship with God and a testimony before men. The only way to deal with it is to go through the pain of pulling it up before God and digging it out. If you don’t get it all out the first time, either because you are not aware that it is there or because you would rather not deal with the pain of pulling it all out, you will suffer the consequences down the road. The pain of exposing that sin pales in comparison to the relief that will flood your soul when you finally get it out.

Read also: Ecclesiastes 10:1-9

Quote of the day: "There can be no peace between you and Christ while there is peace between you and sin.” – C.H. Spurgeon

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