Romans 5:15-17 - But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man's trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. And the free gift is not like the result of that one man's sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. For if, because of one man's trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.
Whenever I think of plastic drinking straws, and I seldom do, it seems to me the straw is a small, an almost insignificant and inconsequential, item.
Which is why I was quite shocked to hear the response of environmental leaders when they were told that, as of September, in Ireland and the United Kingdom, McDonald's is going to begin using paper drinking straws. Countries like France, Norway, Sweden, Australia, and the United States are going to be conducting tests to see if they can do the same.
Amazingly, environmentalists called this a "significant contribution" to going green. I wondered what do they know that I don't? A little research showed
1. the McDonald's of Ireland and England use 1.8 million plastic straws every day;
2. it can take straws hundreds of years to decompose;
3. only one percent of straws are recycled and, worldwide, plastic straws are the sixth most common type of litter.
In earthly or in spiritual matters, there are times when making changes in little things can make a big difference. For example,
1. when Adam and Eve chomped down on the forbidden fruit, they probably thought their disobedience was a little thing. It wasn't. It was a very big thing. Indeed, their act of disobedience introduced sin and death into the world.
2. when Jesus was being tempted in the wilderness, Satan's suggestion to turn stones into bread might have seemed like a trivial thing. Yes, Jesus could have felt that way, but He didn't. He knew that to disobey one part of the Lord's Laws is to disobey them all.
Because the Lord resisted that temptation -- along with everything else the devil and the world threw up against Him during the course of His life -- He was able to fulfill the Law and do for us that which we could not do for ourselves.
Jesus has completed the work of redemption the Father had entrusted to Him. Because He has, there is now forgiveness and salvation for all whom the Holy Spirit brings to faith in the risen Redeemer.
And that, my friends is not a small thing!
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I rejoice in the sacrifice made by the Savior. In little things and large, He has successfully completed the work given to Him. Through His work I am forgiven, granted salvation and life eternal. In Jesus, I give thanks. Amen.
The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by Jen Gidman for Newser on June 15, 2018. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link, which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written: http://www.newser.com/story/260674/plastic-straws-on-their-way-out-at-mcdonalds.html
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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