When I was 11 or 12 years old in the early Seventies, I somehow managed to scratch together enough money to buy a guitar from a college friend of my brother’s. At that age, it quickly became one of my most prized possessions. The instrument was manufactured in 1966 in Sweden and likely made its way to the United States along with an American soldier who had been serving abroad. I don’t know the names of those who may have owned it, what their musical taste or playing skill level was, or if they were morally sound individuals. The instrument’s exact history before it came into my possession is unclear, but the case that contained it would lead you to believe that it saw some use and abuse. I do know that the late Sixties and early Seventies were troubling times and over the years I have imagined my brownish blue prized possession in all sorts of settings and sordid environments before it came into my possession.
So a little while ago I decided to install a new set of strings and perform a little maintenance and cleaning. A light coat of a specialized cleaner revealed the fact that my prized possession didn’t begin its life brownish blue. It was a beautiful sky blue and the brown that was now disappearing with every wipe of the cloth was a stain that it had carried for around 50 years. I expect it was a combination of smoke, nicotine, and ground in dust or dirt.
So many comparisons can be made. So many lessons can be learned.
Romans 3:23 says, “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” The wonderful thing about God’s grace is that our sins can be forgiven. Even the ones that mark us for the majority of our lives. 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
If I had only applied that special cleaner in the early Seventies, I could have enjoyed the original unstained beauty of that guitar throughout the years of my life. I will not allow it to get into that condition again.
Let’s not journey through the years of our lives carrying the stain and burden of sin when the Lord’s forgiveness is available. Let’s get our lives right and not allow ourselves to get into that condition again.
In Christian Love,
Darryl L. Thornton