My husband jokes that I have lost library privileges in every state in the union, which is not quite true. We haven't moved that much!What is true, is that I am frequent library user, a horrible procrastinator and an avoider of conflict. So, when I have books that are more than a couple days late, I go into avoidance mode feeling I can't show my face at the local branch. I bury my head shamefully in the sand while the fines steadily increase, like a taxi meter headed for the airport, finally exceeding replacement value. Of course, loving books as I do, I eventually own up and pay the exorbitant fines, considering it a good deal compared to the equivalent cost of much shipping and handling at Amazon. The library is certainly a good cause.
Until I learned about Happy Hour! Now, I mark my calendar for the last Friday of every month, anticipating another new grace period, while I search under mattresses and behind furniture for the rogue book or tape. The library has long been my favorite institution, all the moreso now! Between my over-consumption of books and Reid's penchant for stickers and de-constructivism, we have tried the patience of many a librarian. (See original post for details.)
When I carry a double digit debt at the library, my heart is heavy. I feel banned from my favorite place to browse and choose books. Trapped at home, unable to find my Get Out of Jail Free card (the missing book) I enter a stubborn refusal to pay for something I only intended to borrow. Grounded from a favorite activity, then a paralyzing guilt of neglect and tardiness set in. Chastising myself is depressing and being angry at Reid for his part in it, is not productive. Now, not to over spiritualize but, isn't sin just like that?
Happy Hour sets me free! Last time, I was visibly uplifted, walking out to the car with a fresh stack of free books! The parallel hit me with the salt air; Jesus forgives and forgets our iniquity. He gives us privileges back; the right to pray to Him and be heard without obstruction; the carefree feeling of innocence and childlike faith return; the squeaky clean shine of having unrighteousness removed as far as the east is from the west. The only difference is that His happy hour can be daily or hourly, as needed.
Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. Psalm 51:1-3
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. 1 John 1:6-8
When Jesus saw their faith, he said, "Friend, your sins are forgiven ." Luke 5:19-21
"Blessed are those whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Romans 4:6-8
...as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.