White As Snow

Lindsey Zarob, Content Manager, Central Ministries | July 8, 2024

Wash and make yourselves clean.
    Take your evil deeds out of my sight;
    stop doing wrong.
Learn to do right; seek justice.
    Defend the oppressed.
Take up the cause of the fatherless;
    plead the case of the widow.
“Come now, let us settle the matter,”
    says the Lord.
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
    they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red as crimson,
    they shall be like wool.
Isaiah 1:16-18

The evening had progressed just like any other. Bedtime rolled around, and as if on cue, my children forgot their bedtime routine. Mind you, this is the same routine we have been following their entire lives—they were 8, 10 and 11 at the time. Nonetheless, the goofing around ensued, and they had to be reminded repeatedly that brushing their teeth was a part of the process. 

They were finally settled into bed, or so I thought, when one of them walked into the family room and said in a shaky voice, “Mom, can I talk to you.” I followed them into their room, and my child began to cry. “I have to tell you something, Mom. And it’s really, really bad. Like really bad.” 

“Okay, honey, I’m listening.” 

With some coaxing and through loud sobs and deep breaths, this baby of mine (not really my baby, but you know, each of them will always be my baby) finally shared what was destroying their little heart. Once the “thing” was in the light, we could talk about how to repair the consequences of their sin. But the first thing I did was embrace that child and remind them of who they are in my eyes and in God’s eyes. They made a serious mistake, and they would have to suffer the consequences, but they also would be loved through it all, and this mom of theirs wouldn’t let them wear their mistake as their identity.  

The prophets in the Old Testament delivered messages accusing the Israelites of breaking the Mosaic Covenant that God had established with them. But the prophets’ message rarely ended there. They almost always showed the people how to make amends and reminded them of God’s call on them to live like the people of God. 

The Holy Spirit may have been the prophetic voice that led to my child’s confession—I’m not certain. But I do know that expressing our sorrow and changing our ways helps restore our relationships with others and God. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool” (Isaiah 1:18).

Next Steps

Read today’s Scripture passage and take note of what stands out to you. If nothing at first, go back and read it again, maybe even out loud. Try journaling about what comes to mind.