Published February 14, 2012
This past weekend, Paul and I took the train the Philadelphia, along with our former pastor and his wife. Arriving at 30th Street Station, we caught the connecting train to Market Street East station in downtown Philadelphia.
It was a basically unplanned day, but we knew we wanted to explore the Reading Terminal farmers market. Food of all kinds, smells from everywhere and all varieties of people help to create the excitement and interest of the market.
On the train to center city, I was reading a guide which reminded me of the Italian Market. Having heard it was worth exploring, we walked to this outdoor market which extends for about five blocks along South 9th Street.
From there, we continued walking to the corner that is home of Pat's King Of Steaks and Gino's cheesesteaks. There is a huge competition between these two cheesesteak joints and we chose Pat's, which has an historic marker, for our cheesesteak lunch. The "best cheesesteak I have ever eaten" is not worded too strongly and it was well worth the more than twenty block walk.
We headed back towards the train station area and beyond. By 5 p.m. when we caught the train for home, my legs were tired. Paul enjoyed looking out the window as we traveled and the rest of us enjoyed catnaps. In fact, by 9 p.m., Paul and I had turned in, sound asleep for the night. The day had been good but all the walking had caught up with us.
But on Sunday morning, I woke with a horrible backache, although I had not had one when I went to bed. I had difficulty getting up and standing straight. My legs felt like they had been used a lot, but that was a normal tired feeling. I didn't understand why my back pained so badly.
I walked into the bathroom, which is where I saw my magnetic necklace lying...and I knew. I constantly wear a magnetic necklace and for me, it keeps muscle and joint pain at a minimum. When I had taken my bath the evening before, I had forgotten to put it back around my neck. (I'm not trying to sell you on magnetic anything, but for me it improves my health.)
Such a small item, but for me that necklace makes a big difference in how I feel.
In our spiritual lives, we generally aren't choosing to commit the big sins. We don't murder. We don't curse. We aren't living a life of prostitution or other criminal activity.
Generally with us, it is a "little" sin. It's something so small, we feel it couldn't possibly make a difference in our lives. It is something small enough that no one will ever know it happened. The bad part is that those "small" sins open the door and the next sin is that much easier to overlook, as well.
We know we should pray and read the Bible, but it won't hurt to miss today or this week or this year. We know we shouldn't watch that show or movie, but what can one show or one movie hurt? What difference will it make to go with the crowd just this time?
We classify the sin as "small" and justify our actions. But with God, there are no "little" sins or "big" sins. Sin is sin. God abhors sin. He wants us to be living a holy life and following those guidelines He gave us for our good.
Just as such a little item like a magnetic necklace makes a difference in eliminating my back pain, so a little thing like skipping prayer or choosing the wrong friends makes a big difference in opening my life to future sins. Watch out for the little things in your spiritual life. Do what you know is right and avoid what you know is wrong. God doesn't have a chart to classify our sins. Sin is sin. Avoid it at all cost and if you haven't avoided it, ask Jesus forgiveness through His blood. Nothing is too small or too big. His blood covers it all.
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