I loved being a part of the Respectable Sins book study. I was in a Tuesday morning group with 10-15 other ladies. I joined the study, excited to dive into a book I’d been eyeing for a bit now, but also excited to get to know some new ladies. Right away while reading the book, I related to everything it talked about. It was the kind of book where you start to underline a good thought —and next thing you know, you’ve underlined the whole page.
Jerry Bridges asks us to “confront the sins we tolerate.” At first, I was overwhelmed thinking of how many “respectable sins” are tolerated in my life. Discontentment is a part of my daily routine, and pride and irritability show up to share my morning coffee. These struggles are so “normal” that we start to accept them and not fight them. Our focus is often on the “big” sins, and we tend to overlook the “little” sins. I found it so helpful to refocus my attention on what God calls us to care about: all sin. It can feel easy to avoid committing “big” sins—but God wants all of us. He wants our understanding of the gospel to reflect in our lives in such a way that we take all sin seriously and seek to submit our whole hearts to Jesus.
Recognizing the “little” sins in my life has made me more reliant on the Holy Spirit in my day to day. I don’t have to fight these struggles alone! I have felt my need for Jesus as I fight against the respectable sins and seek to be more like him. The awareness of my dependency on God has deepened my prayer life and relationship with God. It’s also grown my marriage as I share these sins with my husband and ask for his prayer to fight them. Praying together against respectable sins has brought us closer to the cross in a new way.
I also learned so much from the other ladies in my group. Each chapter brought such good discussion, and hearing how others struggle and fight against respectable sins spurred me on. People in all different walks of life, walking together against socially “acceptable” norms of gossip and anxiety—it’s inspiring! Each meeting was filled with easy conversation and valuable discussions. So grateful for the ladies who participated and shared from their own lives so that God can work in mine!