For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23).
She is sitting silently still in the back of the church,
Listening to the choir sing about God’s love,
A love so silky and soft.
Then the memory of the night before marches into her mind like stern soldiers,
Pulling their guns and aiming at the last piece of her integrity.
She remembers the night very well.
That subtle voice had whispered, “Don’t”.
But the desires had billowed up from her stomach like a surging sea
And danced around her like a beautiful blue veil of poison.
The subtle voice whispered again, “Don’t”,
But she was already dancing with a fleeting passion.
I know I should chain these desires to the cross
But not tonight, she thought. Maybe next time.
The hunger within her excavated through her pores.
She craved it and kept her eyes on it.
Her heart hiccupped behind her black blouse.
Perspiration covered her forehead like dew.
“I have to have it,” she confessed under her breath.
And when she reached out and tasted what she desired,
She felt a piece of herself being sliced off like hot knife
Slivering a stick of butter.
So now that she’s sitting silently still in the back of the church,
Listening to a song about God’s love,
She prays that he will forgive her for disappointing him once again.
And as she begs him over and over inside her mind, all of a sudden, it seemed like someone pushed a pause button in the atmosphere.
She runs her palm against her hot pink dress when she hears,
“I will always love you, but one day you will go too far.
I pay (reward) you with blessings after you’re obedient.
I reward you with peace when storms are trying to blow away your serenity.
I strengthen you when you’re family and friends break your heart.
I provide money for you to pay for what you need.
I give you everything you need to live.
But the enemy pays you back by taking away each blessing I give to you.
Every time you submit to death in sheep clothing,
Every time you touch death that hides behind the golden facades of lies,
Parts of you die.
He will tell you it is okay to disobey me because you will get this or that,
But that is not true.
After you disobey me, he takes away your love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control.
Then you die.”
What happened next shocked the entire church.
This broken Christian sprints to the altar and drops to her knees. Some are looking at her like she is out of order. We ain’t even got to the altar call yet. We’re still trying to collect the offering.
Ironically, a few other broken Christians join her at the altar.
The Holy Spirit did interrupt the service on that day and souls were saved for real.
The altar became like a hospital at 1 PM. People repented, shed tears, fell prostrate, and had a true moment with God.
Angels did sweep up their brokenness after God bestowed new life to each of his Children at the altar.
And the sister in the hot pink dress hadn’t been the same since.
She turned from an acorn into an oak tree for the Lord.
If you look really hard in your church, I bet you she’s sitting somewhere in there.
Books by Stacy-Ann Facey