My lovely Macbook Pro laptop computer has many wonderful features. One that it is lacking, however, is a “touch screen”. Any work I have to do requires either using its keyboard or trackpad (the laptop equivalent of a mouse…). Here’s the weird thing, however. Despite lacking a touch screen, the screen still gets covered in fingerprints. I honestly don’t know how it happens. I don’t think I actually touch it too much, if at all, but I can’t deny the smudgy messiness I have to clean up weekly.
I think that’s the way of life as well. I think that we often find ourselves in one mess or another without really knowing how we got there. Was it a misspoken word said to the wrong person? Was it a gut-reaction to one situation in the past that had a negative ripple effect on our present? Are we prone to making the same messy mistake without realizing what we’re messing up or that we’re doing it all the time? Sometimes it’s hard to say where the messiness comes from. Sometimes we just have to accept that we’ve messed up and figure out how to fix it.
While we might not always be able to figure out why our non-touch screens still get covered in fingerprints or how we ended up in our current state of messiness, we can usually figure out how to tidy things up or make amends. And, if truth be told, we humans are messy creatures. We don’t always make the right choices, say the right things or do everything perfectly. Messiness might not be a way of life, but it is certainly a constant factor in our existence.
The other constant factor in our existence is the forgiveness, grace and mercy Jesus offers us. Through Him, we know that our Spiritual messiness is both forgiven and fixable. When our mistakes go against God’s will (and, let’s face it, pretty much every way we mess up dishonours our Creator), Jesus assures us of our forgiveness and models ways to not make a mess of our lives.
As careful as I am, I know that I will always have to clean my laptop’s screen of the fingerprints that mess it up. As careful as we are, we know that we will repeat some mistakes and quite likely find new ways to make a mess of things. Know, however, Jesus’ forgiveness is far greater than our messiness. While we might not always know why we mess up, we know that it is because of God’s great love for us that forgiveness is always there for us.