My wife and I have been married for almost 17 years. Probably the stupidest thing I ever said to her happened when we were on our way to pick up our wedding rings in downtown St. Paul.
As Governor Jesse “The Mind” Ventura once said, “The streets of St. Paul were designed by drunk Irishmen.” He got in trouble for saying that, as happens when a guy speaks truth.
In the midst of missing our exit and always getting one-way streets going the opposite one way we needed, I got frustrated with my soon-to-be wife. “You don’t have to talk to me like I’m stupid” she said.
To which I replied, “Well, if you didn’t drive like you were stupid I wouldn’t.”
Sin really messes with stuff. We all know how sin brought death, created weeds, made men sweaty and women whiny during childbirth. We know how sin leads to consequences, we reap what we sow and how the sins of the fathers will be passed down to the third and fourth generations.
One of the aspects of sin’s mess we don’t often consider is what it does to God.
Before Noah’s ark, it repented God He had made humanity. They were evil continually and God had second thoughts about creating them.
We love that God is described as patient, kind, merciful, and willing to forgive. Perhaps we don’t think enough about His patience. Another word for “patience” is “longsuffering.” To suffer a long time.
When we sin, it causes God to suffer. I imagine we don’t think this is a big deal because God is “outside of time.” How long can “long” be for someone not impacted by time? I’m not sure we fully understand God’s relation to time well enough.
If God has no relation to time then He can’t be patient or longsuffering, two things the Bible describes Him as. God is also described as being jealous. He is not pleased that we serve another master.
My wife was patient with me in St. Paul, we did make it to the jeweler and we even made it to our wedding. Seventeen years later my wife has learned to put up with my dumb remarks and I am learning to not say (and perhaps not even think) as many hurtful comments.
Sin hurts people and it hurts God. Sin requires others and God to be longsuffering and patient with you. Next time you blithely sin, remember the patience on display by others and particularly that of God.
Your fleshly pleasure is suffering for another. Does that matter to you?