My oldest grandson is a charmer. He is sweet, gentle, generous, thoughtful and a con artist in the making. He will work the cuteness angle, bat those impossibly long lashed eyes and convince you that black is white. His most overworked con, however involves the sentence, “It was an accident”. This sentence covers a multitude of sins, from a cup slipping through his fingers, to throwing a ball at something, to deliberately pushing his brother down.
Yet this is also one of the hallmarks of his generosity. One day I was helping him with a task when I dropped something on the floor. He immediately said, “that’s okay Grammie, it was an accident.” Then yesterday I left a glass of juice sitting where the baby could get it and with a thunk, it spilled all over. My boy jumped in and said, “It’s okay Mommy, it was an accident.” I said, “It’s okay if Mommy is mad at me, I should have checked where the glass was. His immediate response, “No Grammie, Mommy is not mad at you, it was an accident.”
It seems to me that there are some lessons here about prayer. We see those lessons in the Lord’s Prayer as we ask God for our daily bread (the time we spend with God) and ask him to forgive our sins as we have forgiven others.
Lesson 1: We need to be honest in our confession. Was what we did an accident? An oversight? Or the result of our attitude and deliberately done. We cannot con God. We need to be honest about ourselves and our motives when we ask for forgiveness.
Lesson 2: forgive us as we forgive others….we need to be as willing to forgive. Those around us are simply trying to figure out life with God just as we are. They make the same mistakes and have the same failures. When we are generous in forgiving others, then God promises to be generous in forgiving us.
Now I am fairly certain the God doesn’t say, “It’s okay, Ena, it was an accident”, but he does say, “I love you. In Jesus Christ you are forgiven.”
Aaah, the sweet sound of grace.