The Children's Bible Hour: Keys for Kids

Keys for Kids is a daily devotional for children.

Big or Small

Bible Reading: Matthew 7:1-5; 1 John 1:7-9

"Have you finished cleaning your room already?" asked Mom as Kennedy joined her outside. Kennedy nodded but avoided her mother's eyes. She had not cleaned her room at all, but she intended to get it done before Mom checked later.

Kennedy waved at a neighbor girl. "You know, Mom, it seems like Sara is always doing something wrong. She cheats sometimes when we play games, and she tells the biggest lies!"

"That's too bad," said Mom, "but you sin sometimes too. Right?"

"Well
yeah." Kennedy remembered the lie she had just told--but it seemed like such a little one. Besides, I didn't really lie, she thought. I just nodded. "But the stuff I do isn't half as bad as what Sara does," Kennedy said as her little sister, Ellie, came out of the house.

"Mommy," Ellie called,"can I--" Her question ended in a wail as she fell. Mom and Kennedy hurried to help her. "My foot hurts," said Ellie with a sob. Upon investigating, they discovered that with bare feet, Ellie had stepped on a sharp, little rock.

After caring for Ellie, Mom turned to Kennedy. "You compared yourself to Sara, but don't think your sins are less important in God's eyes than hers are. The Bible says if we break just one small part of God's law, we're as guilty as we'd be if we broke every part."

"How can that be?" asked Kennedy. "I don't get it."

Mom held out the rock Ellie had stepped on. "This is small, but it hurt your sister and caused her to fall--same as if it had been a bigger rock she stumbled over. It's something like that with sin. In God's sight, there are no big or small sins. It's all just plain sin."

Kennedy frowned. "So I might as well do the things Sara does because it's all the same to God anyway?"

"No, but instead of pointing a finger at others, we need to confess our own sins to Jesus. Our sin has caused each one of us to stumble and fall, but Jesus picks us back up. He forgives us."

Kennedy was quiet for a moment. "I didn't really clean my room," she said. "I'm sorry. I'll do it now." She looked at her mom. "And I'll think twice before saying I'm better than somebody else." (Deborah S. Marett)

How About You?
Do you think of sins as either big or little? God doesn't. To Him, sin is simply sin, and all sin is detestable to Him. That's why He sent His Son, Jesus, to save us from it--so we could be forgiven. None of us has any right to think we're better than someone else. Instead of being critical of others, look for sins in your own life. Then confess them to Jesus.

Today's Key Verse:
For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.(NIV) (James 2:10)

Today's Key Thought:
God hates all sin