No Gravel on Streets of Gold


Well-Known Member
WHAT mATTERS? Small Gravel, Big Consequences​

I walk about a mile on a gravel road each morning before breakfast. Quite often I find a tiny piece of gravel has jumped up into one of my tennis shoes. I don’t try to put them there; it just happens because I’m walking where gravel happens to be. At first, I try to cope with it, hoping it will go away, or it will move to the side where I don’t feel it. But that maneuver never works for very long. Then I try to ignore it, the cure appearing worse than the irritant. I don’t want to deal with stopping, balancing on one foot to take my shoe off to remove the gravel while keeping my unshod foot off the ground to avoid picking up more gravel. Finally, I remember from experience that the sooner I deal with the issue, the less I must walk on something that will bug me until it is dealt with. I know that if it is left without resolution quickly, it could end up becoming imbedded in my foot, causing an infection, giving me gangrene, resulting in having a limb cut off and then death. This is an unlikely and extreme example, but one that I want to alert us to if we don’t deal quickly and seriously with the “gravel” of sins in our life. They start out small, but if not dealt with decisively, may result in “a sin unto death” 1 John 5:16

In John 13, Jesus gave us a similar metaphor when He washed His disciples’ feet. He was telling His believing disciples that His death, burial, and resurrection would secure their salvation, because payment and forgiveness for the penalty of their sin and sins would be made at the cross. Their whole spiritual bodies would be washed. But His point was that just by walking through the streets of this world, though their bodies would remain clean, (that is, they would remain saved,) their sandaled feet would become dirty, needing to be washed, (just as confession of our sins restores personal forgiveness and fellowship with Him.) He then told them to wash each other’s feet, signifying the need to forgive one another.

What matters? We pick up gravel (or sins,) by our daily walk in this world, and until we’re walking on streets of gold, it’s going to happen. But don’t try to live with them. God wants us holy and in fellowship with Him. The Holy Spirit will remind us of their presence and convict us. Neither try to ignore them. It is humbling to admit and confess that we have submitted to the flesh when we’ve committed sins, but it is the only way to remove them. Finally, the quicker we deal with our sins by confession, as small as they might seem to be, the less likely they will multiply, and start doing damage to ourselves and others. If left un-confessed for too long, our hearts will become hardened, making us unusable to the Lord, even to the point of Him taking us home. So, as soon as you feel that first irritation of gravel, stop and dump it out, (which would be to acknowledge and confess it is there.) Then put your shoe back on and finish your walk (this will affirm that you really believe that “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9) One more important thing we must remember. Because the gravel might have left some soreness on our foot, we may feel like the gravel is still there even after it has been removed. Similarly, after confessing our sins, we may feel they haven’t been taken away and forgiven. Don’t fall for that lie of the enemy. The truth is, faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus has taken away and given forgiveness for all our sins. The proof of our sins being forgiven and gone are based on the fulfillment of the reliable promises of God. 1 John 1:9; Psalm 103:10-12 Our trust in those promises will override and supersede any of our unbelieving and unreliable feelings.