Daily Devotional for June 8, 2021

Our church staff has deep, theological discussions on a regular basis.  Usually, these happen in the break room during lunch.  Yesterday was one of the deepest.

As Kay ate her instant noodles, Brian ate his hamburger, Breana stared at her phone, Melissa unpacked her lunch, I ate the lunch Shannon had packed, Pete munched on whatever Pete was munching on, and Chris stared hungrily at everyone eating because Brian didn’t offer to get anyone else food at Whataburger, we were discussing the deep theological implications of the fact that every man should be required to carry a pocketknife.

At that point Pete and I both pulled out our Swiss Army Knives to show the rest of our uneducated, backwards church staff what a pocketknife was.  That was the moment Melissa pulled a plastic bag filled with carrots out of her lunchbox. 

Realizing she would not be able to open the bag, Chris pulled out his keys and offered to open the bag for her.  To Pete’s and my shock and horror, Melissa handed her impenetrable plastic bag of carrots to Chris instead of one of us holding a pocketknife.

Then, Chris stabbed the bulletproof bag of carrots with his keys.  As any sane person would think, nothing happened.

Realizing his keys were not a pocketknife, Chris grabbed each side of the bag and pulled with all his might.  As his face turned bright red and sweat poured from his forehead, Chris began to make noises that no human has ever made before.  At that moment, the bag exploded.  Carrots flew across the room.  The force was so intense carrots stuck in the walls, the door of the microwave was blown off, and everyone was covered in carrot guts.

Sadly, all of this chaos, damage, and confusion could have been avoided if Chris hadn’t pretended his keys were a pocketknife.  It was really sad.

This got me thinking.

Just like Chris pretended his keys were a pocketknife, some people who say they follow Jesus Christ pretend they have no sin.  Just like the carrots becoming an unmitigated disaster, the same happens when someone says they follow Jesus but have no sin.  It always ends badly.

This is the sort of hypocrisy John was referencing by saying, “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 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 1:8-10)

The only way to accept God’s grace is to know we need it.  There is no room for pretending.

Prayer:  Dear Gracious Heavenly God, I know that I have fallen short and need your grace to truly live.  Forgive my sins and free me from my burdens.  Let my life reflect the joy of accepting your gift of love and redemption.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

Just for the record, Brian rushed back to his office and searched until he found his pocketknife.  Breana explained she carries her keys to defend herself – no one gets that.  And Chris was raised in California – the rules are different on that end of the country.

Also, while Pastor Kit wasn’t at lunch, I asked him later, if he carried a pocketknife.  He was truly offended and explained in a lengthy answer that he carried one in his pocket and another in his truck.  He was raised in Texas.

So now that I’ve had a few minutes to process the Great Carrot Massacre of 2021, I have revised my earlier beliefs.

I believe that each adult should have a pocketknife on their person at all times.  That way, Kevlar coated carrots won’t stand a chance.

As you can see from yesterday, your church staff is incredibly theologically sophisticated.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.
Tom Robbins