The Silent Sin: Dismissal
by Peggy K Mack
July 15, 2013
This morning while playing a game of Solitaire on my laptop, I was silently making an excuse to continue wasting time instead of getting the day started with making my bed, a shower, etc. I was dismissing in my mind the importance of getting busy by telling myself I was retired, had plenty of time, etc, knowing that my delays would cause frustration with my husband when he saw me sitting and not moving along with the day so we could do the things we have planned together.
Dismissal, a silent sin, allows us to give ourselves room to mess up. The husband who says to himself, "I only had drinks with some friends from the office and don't understand why she's upset", knows the entire time that he's needed at home because both husband and wife work and the evening hours are when the children are fed, bathed and read to before going to bed. Those family hours are crucial in keeping the family unit strong, but dismissal, allowing himself to believe his choice was nothing sets the stage for eroding the family unit. Sadly, somewhere in his mind, he knows it.
Dismissal, the silent sin, is what the housewife uses to run up credit cards on clothing or items she does not have a true need for at the time. She often uses the shopping as a pacifier to soothe the true problem that is bothering her. Rather than face the problem and make healthy choices for herself and her family, she is pacifying her needs while running the family into debt, knowing somewhere in her mind, that she is using dismissal to excuse her choice. It is not a problem or sin of ignorance or denial. This is knowing the behavior is not good for the family and choosing to continue. The act of dismissal is the same as making excuses to yourself or others.
Some of our greatest sins seem to be "nothing" but can be the stumbling block to keeping a marriage strong. Dismissal, the silent sin, opens the door to actions that damage the family. It is hurtful when the spouse in a marriage responds to his partners concerns with indignant replies, "Oh! Get over it. You are making a BIG deal out of it." For the partner, it is a big deal. Maybe they see the situation more clearly but the silent sin of dismissal is at work in the house.
In this moment, I am typing my thoughts about dismissal when my day should have started twenty minutes ago. For a change, I am acknowledging my behavior and not telling myself that it is fine. With that I end these thoughts.
The Parable of the Great Banquet
15 When one of those at the table with him heard this, he said to Jesus, “Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.”
16 Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17 At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’
18 “But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’
19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’
20 “Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’
21 “The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’
22 “‘Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’
23 “Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full. 24 I tell you, not one of those who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’”
Give us strength in our relationships to avoid the silent sins that seem so negligible at the time but can do us great harm in the long run. When we are expected to be a part of a plan, help us to not make excuses or to dismiss the importance of our part. When we begin to dismiss our behavior send your Holy Spirit to speak to us and guide us to do what we know is right.
In Jesus' Name,