Why then have these people turned away? Why does Jerusalem always turn away? They cling to deceit; they refuse to return. I have listened attentively, but they do not say what is right. No one repents of his wickedness, saying, “What have I done?”…Are they ashamed of their loathsome conduct? No, they have no shame at all; they do not even know how to blush.” (Jeremiah 8: 5-6, 12, NIV)
My youngest daughter has bright red hair, fair skin and lots of freckles. When she gets embarrassed, for example by a mother who writes about her on the internet, Molly can’t help but blush. And when she blushes, she blushes. Her creamy complexion darkens to match her hair.
Jeremiah wrote that God’s people don’t even know how to blush. They weren’t even the slightest bit remorseful for their sin. The passage reminds me of a friend whose choices led her away from her marriage, away from the church, away from the Lord. After much pleading and many tears–from my eyes, not hers–she simply “refused to return”. To this day, she remains in blatant sin, “unashamed of her loathsome conduct”. She doesn’t even know to blush.
The truth is, though, I could become just like her. As much as it grieves me to admit it, I could potentially, over time, harden my heart, too. Because of this, I often pray that God would make me feel just awful over my sin. Even the slightest sin, God–make me hate it. I never want such a distance, such a hardening to separate me from Him. I pray the same for my children, too.–That Nathan, Anne and little redhead Molly would be just sick over anything that dishonors God. Let us hate sin, God, and love only You. Let us, like Molly, always know how to blush.