A little over a week ago Lucy, Bella’s gerbil, died. Friday night I went to feed Rick James, the other gerbil, some celery and realized he had also died sometime during the day.
After he died, Bella picked him up from his cage and her hand was covered with these little red moving dots. After some research, we found out that both Rick James and Lucy must have died from having a severe mite infection. We didn’t know anything about mites or even that gerbils could have them and spread them to each other. We also learned that they can kill gerbils.
The guy who had Lucy that gave him to Bella originally had another gerbil. Usually the gerbils were purchased by the school through a medical supplier. However, when Biv’s original gerbil died mid-semester, the professor didn’t have time to order another and purchased Lucy from a pet-supply store. Apparently, Lucy was infected with mites. When Bella got both Lucy and Rick James and put them in the same cage, Lucy infected Rick James and subsequently they both died.
This got me to thinking about people. We too suffer from an infection. We are born infected with sin. We got this infection from Adam at the moment of our conception and it is an infection that leads to death. The Bible teaches us that “… the wages of sin is death.” (Romans 6:23). We are going to die because of the curse of sin. As believers, we are ultimately cured of this infection. Our earthly bodies will still die, but we will live forever with Christ in Heaven.
As believers; however, we also can be “infected” by sin in another way. 1 Corinthians 6:9 tells us, “Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.”” In our earthly bodies, we still war with sin. (Thanks Tommy for the wonderful sermon on this topic last night!) We have to struggle every day to not let sin corrupt (or infect) us. Being around others, especially unbelievers, tends to make this struggle harder. Most people can relate to this. A good illustration for me, someone who struggles with losing weight, is being around people who eat whatever they want all the time. I can stick with my Weight Watchers and do pretty good until I am around others who are eating. Then it is an intense struggle for me not to snack and eat unhealthy. It is the same for us when people are sinning around us.
Unfortunately, sin can be a lot of fun. Our corrupted, sinful bodies long and fight against the Holy Spirit within us. We WANT to sin. Someone once put it this way to me: it is easier to pull someone off a chair then for someone on a chair to pull another up. In the same way, it is easier to drag someone down into sinfulness with you than to help them to be holy.
That’s why I am once again in a good, sound accountability group. I need someone to pull me up and help me to live a holy life. I need someone to knock me in the head and call me out when I sin. And to help inoculate me from the infection called sin.