I share the following with the permission of a dear friend of mine. She told me this story in email and I thought it too perfect an illustration NOT to share with you. I hope it encourages you!
Stay Out of Those Trash Dumpsters!
©2008 Susan Ford
My 10 year old son, Zach came up to me tonight all solemn. He said, “I have to tell you something. I was playing in the big dumpster across the road today.. I just thought I should be honest and tell you the truth.” (It had never occurred to me to forbid him playing in it, since I couldn’t have imagined why anyone would even WANT to, lol.)
Anyway, my heart just swelled in love for him. I hugged him and thanked him for telling me, and said that it is true that he shouldn’t be playing in it…broken glass, or snakes or all kinds of dangers lurked in there. But that I appreciated his honesty and told him he was a good boy…
The point is, that simple confession came from a boy who was not afraid of me, he felt the “sin” and didn’t want there to be broken fellowship…even though I wasn’t aware of any break…awareness of wrongdoing made him feel bad, and he did what he needed to remove the burden and not “hold out on me.”
That was such a picture of the real nature of confession. How many times have I been playing in a dumpster? Finding delight in rubbish, unaware of the hidden dangers lurking beneath my grimy treasures. God isn’t waiting to pounce when we realize that playing in our dumpster would displease Him…and if we confess, He even joyfully receives us, and our confession, as a precious gift. It is a great intimacy booster. It shows love and trust on the part of the child, a desire to be right and to please the Father who has shown Himself trustworthy and kind.
And if God feels anything like I felt, the love is even greater in those moments, because you come closer in intimacy. My son completely bypassed the need for “punishment”…his confession showed his heart was tender to me, and desired to be obedient to the spirit of my desires…even beyond the “law” that I might have laid down for him. He wanted to keep the channels of trust open between us. And that is what I desire to do with God…keep those channels open, the relationship secure in its intimacy. And to stay out of those trash dumpsters!