Sometimes I grab a knife and whack off the stem of my banana, but I usually grab it between my thumb and index finger and pull. You know what happens then. Usually the stem snaps and I start peeling my banana, but sometimes the stem is squishy, and no matter what angle I try, I just can’t get that stem to break.
One day recently, when my banana stem was squishy, I grabbed the other end and tried to snap it off. I was surprised when it worked. I wondered if I had ever snapped off the bottom end of a banana before. There is, after all, a right way to peel a banana, right?
One time a sweet teen girl was helping me make visual aids for Sunday school. I asked her to color a picture, but failed to mention that the drawing included a portrayal of Jesus. She thought it was some other person from the time of the Bible. When she found out that it was Jesus, she apologized because she had not colored His clothing so that He was wearing a white robe and a blue cloak. She thought that was the right way to portray Jesus’ clothing.
When I peeled a banana from the “wrong” end, I didn’t feel guilty. I just felt surprised. However, when Rachel colored Jesus the “wrong” way, I have a feeling she might have felt a little guilty.
One of life’s challenges is to train our consciences (and those of our children) to feel guilt at the right times. When we are not doing what God says is right, we should feel guilt. The proper response to that guilt is repentance and trust in God’s forgiveness. Praise God for sending Jesus to save us from guilt that is real and from the guilt we feel that is not real.
It was for freedom that Christ set us free;
therefore keep standing firm
and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.
Galatians 5:1, NASB