Four little letters, but a chilling word, a convicting word. In the book The Shack William Paul Young said, “Sin is its own punishment, devouring you from the inside.”

Recently I pulled out some decorative items to brighten up my apartment and give it an air of Autumn with its lovely hues in red, orange, and brown. I placed my pumpkin plate in a holder on the kitchen counter. At the bottom of my storage box I found several child’s blocks. A few years ago, I had arranged a small display for a craft show and used the blocks to spell out my last name. I soon realized that some of the blocks had been lost in my last move. I had set a few on the counter when I was distracted by a call and walked away.

When I returned to the kitchen, what I saw was startling. My blocks were aligned and said

“C_ _ SINS

Okay, Lord, I get it. Yes, I do SEE sins and I ask forgiveness when I recognize my judging, lack of forgiveness to others and other things. I ask to be shown other failures that I might not recognize. When we don’t get the lesson, sometimes we have to be given an arrow, a map, or even a Halloween pumpkin to point the way.

Thank you for the lesson.

Monday Mourning Dove

On Monday this week, I thought about a story a friend had told about his mother and a bird. “What bird is making all that racquet,”she asked. “A Mourning Dove,” my friend replied. afternoon!” But it’s afternoon,”his mom said.

That led me to thinking about how many are”mourning” over the state of our world. The pandemic has caused so many deaths to be mourned. The killing of black people and others in protests and for no reasons at all are causing more mourning. Not just in the black community but among all caring people. What is wrong with people? Why have we still not learned–as we were taught in kindergarten–to be kind, take turns, share and listen more than talk?

On top of all that the country is besieged by hurricanes and floods and fires that cause people to lose their homes and businesses.

Like all mourning, it takes time to process and reach a new type of normal. If you think about it, we should learn from the past but not try to return to it. We have to pray, talk to each other and step out to a morning that is brighter and not one steeped and steaming with “mourning.”

Photo by amit mishra on