by Cynthia L. Simmons @CynthiaLSimons
We’ve learned (the hard way) that renovating a home often unearths hidden problems, creating stress and a need for extra cash. Let me explain. Our living room opens into a formal dining area, which made it a perfect spot for us to host a tea party every Tuesday evening for young people. If one table didn’t hold enough people, we could add more tables end to end all the way into our living room. But the opening between the two rooms wasn’t wide enough to allow people to pass through while others were seated. So, my husband and I decided to remove a portion of the wall on each side to give more room. Sounds easy, right? We hired a contractor and expected a quick fix.
However, we received a nasty surprise. Phil, the man in charge, measured several times, and then measured the garage which sat underneath the two rooms. He told us the wall we needed to alter was load bearing. When he examined the basement, he discovered the original building contractor had incorrectly placed the metal poles beneath the wall– a full foot off from where they belonged. As a result, the floor of the dining room and living room now sagged, all on their eventual way into the garage below.
Can you imagine? We often entertained fifteen to twenty people in that room! My husband and I envisioned our visitors grabbing the walls or curtains for dear life as the floor collapsed under them.
Phil had unearthed a serious flaw in the contractor’s work. But it was impossible to see without a careful examination. Doubtless, the floor installer made the floors level at installation and assumed they would remain that way.
This story reminds me of how sin can cause damage, even when it may not be blatantly obvious to others. We work hard at appearances and can fool people on what lies beneath the visible. But God, who sees straight into our hearts, does not miss a thing. In Galatians, Paul warns, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows” (Galatians 6:7 NIV). Even when no one has noticed, sin still has natural consequences.
Living with a hidden sin cannot end well. Sin acts like a cancer. It causes strife, anger, and jealousy. Its presence can eat away at the very foundation of relationships and beyond, destroying marriages, friendships, churches, and even nations.
Worst of all, hidden sin is something Satan can use to his advantage. As long as it festers beneath the surface, a sin can maintain its grip on us. Paul warns that we must avoid giving the devil a foothold (Ephesians 4:27). Satan loves a secret.
I’m sure the original contractor for our home never dreamed that fudging a little on the position of basement beams would become such a serious matter. However, time and wear caused increasing damage because the foundation had been compromised.
I’m thankful we found the problem with our floor so we could fix it. We purchased a heavy beam to go under the dining room floor, and in addition to that, Phil’s crew installed another vertical support pole.
In the spiritual realm, we must turn to God for repairs. He created life, and when he forgives, he restores. Don’t let that secret sin keep you in bondage. Jesus Christ can set you free. And you will be building on the firm foundation of truth and God’s grace.
The Lord is near to all who call on Him, to all who call on Him in truth. Psalm 145:18 NIV
About the author: Former home school mother of five, Cynthia has a special spot in her heart for young moms and loves to encourage all women to pursue God. She hosts Heart of the Matter Radio, and writes inspirational fiction and non-fiction. Find her at www.clsimmons.com.
Join the conversation: How have you found freedom from the sin that plagues you?