My Dear, Sweet Girl

A letter to a daughter about her sense of sin.

Here’s what I want you to see so much: The good news of the gospel doesn’t begin by looking across but by looking up. It doesn’t begin by comparing yourself to moms or dads or brothers and sisters. It begins by comparing yourself to Jesus. Look to Jesus! I pray every day that you’ll look to Jesus, that you’ll believe in him and trust in him, and that you’ll come to know him as the very dearest friend.


My dear, sweet girl,

I’m so thankful you’re thinking about sin. I’m so thankful you’re thinking about what it means to be a sinner, what it means to realize that so often you do the bad stuff you swore you wouldn’t do. And not only that, but so often you don’t do the good stuff you had promised to do. I know sin is a hard thing to think about, but it’s such an important thing.

Yesterday you were comparing yourself to your brother and sister. You asked, “Why am I so much more sinful than they are?” We talked then, but I wanted to write a little note to tell you again. I want you to think about two important things.

First, I want you to know that you just can’t trust what you see on the outside of another person. There is always so much more sin on the inside than the outside. Do you remember what Jesus said? “What comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person.” Sin begins on the inside of us and then sometimes comes out in angry words, rolling eyes, stamping feet, slamming doors. We all sin in different ways. Some sin loudly and some sin quietly. Some sin in their actions and some in their imaginations. But it’s all sin. Our problem isn’t just what we do, but who we are! We don’t just do sinful things, we have sinful hearts! And that is our biggest problem in the whole wide world.

Second, and even more important, I want you to remember that the most important comparison you need to make is not between yourself and your brother or sister. It’s not between yourself and your friends, or between yourself and mom and dad. The only comparison that really matters is the comparison between yourself and Jesus.

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