Mary and Johnny explored all the old items in their grandparents’ house.
On one shelf in the dining room, Johnny saw a beautiful glass sculpture of a bird in a nest. As he reached for it, Grandma quickly intervened and said she didn’t want him touching it. The sculpture was very precious to her.
Johnny and Mary said they would leave the sculpture alone.
However, as the days progressed, Johnny couldn’t stop thinking about the beautiful piece. Each morning when the sun shone through the windows, the bird sparkled brightly.
One day, Johnny could not help himself. He carefully picked up the fragile glass bird and nest to admire it.
"Johnny! Put that down!” Mary shouted.
She startled her brother, who dropped the sculpture, which fell to the floor and shattered.
Carefully, Johnny picked up the pieces and carried them to his bedroom. He sat on his bed, looked at them and wondered what to do.
Should he hide the pieces?
Blame it on Mary?
Glue it back together?
Johnny realized he had to tell Grandma the truth.
He found her sitting in the living room, knitting a sweater. Johnny walked up to her and, unable to look her in the eyes, showed her the shards of glass.
"Grandma, I disobeyed you,” he said quietly. “I’m very sorry.”
Grandma carefully took all the pieces of glass from Johnny’s hand and asked, "When did this happen?"
"This morning, just after the sun came up,” he said.
"It is almost supper time now,” Grandma said. “Why did you take so long to tell me?"
"Grandma, I was afraid to tell you,” he said. “I disobeyed you and was trying to figure out a way to hide it. But I finally knew I had to tell you the truth. You are my grandma.”
Johnny finally looked Grandma in the eye. He saw tears.
"I’m very, very sorry! Please forgive me,” he said.
Grandma said, "Come here, Johnny. Sit in my lap."
He did as he was told.
"I saw what happened,” she said. “I was standing by the door and knew you couldn’t see me. I saw you were handling my statue very carefully so I didn’t say anything. I also saw how Mary startled you, which caused you to drop it. I know it was an accident. I was just wondering what you were going to do about the whole situation. And I can truly say you have made the right choice.
"And because you made the right choice and told me the truth of what happened, I certainly forgive you. You have learned a very valuable lesson and have done the right thing. I love you, Johnny."
Remember 1 John 1:8-9: "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
There is freedom for your soul — and your conscience — when wrongdoings are confessed.
Thanks be to God for Jesus Christ our Lord.
The Rev. Mark Broadhead is Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church of Crestview’s pastor.