If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us. 1 John 1:9-10
President Harry Truman had a sign on his desk. The sign read, "The buck stops here."
That was the colorful President's way of acknowledging it is human nature to try to blame someone else for your mistakes, errors and sins. We "pass the buck" because no one likes to acknowledge that he has been guilty of any type of wrongdoing.
America's past national election produced some serious opportunities to pass the buck.
No, I'm not talking about candidates who were disinclined to acknowledge any past mistakes. Nor am I speaking about the excuses produced by all the political prophets whose predictions about the vote's outcome proved to be inaccurate. You've already heard all of those topics hashed and rehashed.
Instead, I would like you to look at one person whose name I could, but choose not to, share.
This Minnesota lady was visited by some police after she had rear ended another vehicle at a stoplight. The officers suspected the lady had had a bit too much to drink, so they gave her a field sobriety test. Not only did she fail the regular tests, she also was unable to spell her name. The lady explained they ought to let her go home, as she had been drinking to numb the pain from the election.
After finding an open bottle of vodka in her purse, the officers declined to do that. Instead, they took her to the station where a blood test showed she was over the legal alcohol limit -- four times over the limit.
Eventually, the lady sobered up.
The next day she was charged with criminal vehicular operation and driving while intoxicated. When she was interviewed by a newspaper man, she said she's "not really into politics," and her comment about the election had been a sarcastic one the police had foolishly accepted as fact.
As far as I can tell, not once did she ever say, "Boy, did I mess up."
Instead, she passed the buck and blamed the election; she passed the buck and blamed the police. In that, she was like most of us. I know she was much like me. And that, my friends is wrong. What is right is to listen to the apostle John who told us to confess -- not to cover up -- but to confess our sins.
When we do that and throw ourselves on the Lord's mercy, we can be sure He will -- because of His Son's sacrifice -- forgive us our sins. And being forgiven is always a lot better than walking around trying to pass the buck to someone else.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, grant that I may with a humble heart acknowledge my sin and rejoice in the forgiveness the Savior has won for me: the forgiveness You so freely give. This I ask in Jesus' Name. Amen.
P.S. It's not often I share something and say, "Take a look, this is interesting." I'm doing that with the Lutheran Hour Ministries' virtual mission trip to Madagascar in January. You can get a sneak peek by following this link: www.lhm.org/onlinemissiontrips.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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