Sunday morning dawned hot and bright. While everyone was eating breakfast, they discussed how to get to church. Normally Rob carried Cathy and Jenny on his dirt bike. Jimmy took Jackie on his small scooter. But Alessandra was an extra person. They decided to walk since the distance wasn’t far.
Alessandra was uplifted by the spirited singing of the congregation. Cathy handed her a Lingala song book, and she did her best to sing phonetically, not knowing what she was saying. Cathy quietly interpreted Pastor Mwambi’s sermon. He gave an illustration of sin. He told of a young man who was engaged to an average-looking woman. One day the man was walking by the river, and he saw a beautiful young lady seated in a canoe on the other side. The young woman called out to him and asked him to commit to being her husband. Although he explained that he was engaged, she continued to persuade him. He finally agreed to break off his engagement. Once the young man committed, she paddled to the other side where for the first time, he saw the beautiful woman from the waist down. He was shocked to find that she was only a half a woman with no legs. The pastor went on to point out that sin deceives us in the very same way.
The allure of sinful choices can be powerful. But one way to combat this issue is to remember that sin offers more than it can fulfill. Romans 8:7-8 says, “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.” Like the attraction of the young man to the beautiful woman, sin can look good from a distance. But closer inspection reveals the truth. Sin deceives; it promises what it cannot keep. May we be wiser than this young man in the allegory and avoid the trickery of sin.