Panties, underwear, undies, bloomers, drawers, tidy whiteys, unmentionables…..I struggle with what word to use. What is appropriate to say being this is a public forum? For the purpose of this story, I think that I’ll just keep it authentic and go with what we actually called them at the time the incident occurred….which is “bloomers.” A very common term in the deep south and one I fondly say with a grin since thats the word my witty daddy called them growing up. He would often interchange it with “drawers” as well, although I never really understood why anyone would call them that?
The story starts on a Christmas eve at my parent’s house and the whole family was gathered to celebrate the season. That particular year my boys, along with my nephews, were exuberant over the zany gag gift they had purchased for my dad. It was tradition for the Porter and Ramsey boys to pick out and purchase a spectacular off the wall, sometimes distasteful, present for their grandfather. I truly think they enjoyed his reaction more than anything. Daddy would always make a big deal and over exaggerate his reaction with wide eyes, silly chuckles and sidesplitting antics. The gift of choice was a 10 inch stuffed, little granpa sitting in a recliner with a pointing finger. The stuffed character’s name was “Pull my finger Fred.” I can still hear the giggles from that Christmas eve. To add to this spectacular gift, imagine Fred with sound effects. What can I say….there is just something about natural body functions that give boys, young and old, the giggles.
As the adults were enjoying the giggling, my sister and I had started picking up the torn papers, boxes, and bows. With each layer of debris there would be another…….and another until suddenly there was a white pair of ladies underwear lying all alone. My father was the first to speak; “Whose bloomers are those in the floor?” Everyone’s attention was then shifted to the lone silky unmentionables making a glaring contrast against the red shag carpet. My sister responded next as she picked them up for all to see….holding them by the elastic on both ends. “My goodness, where did these come from?” We were all giggling at that point and reassuring each other that even though they were quite lovely and somewhat new, the undies had not been a gift opened by anyone.
My very perceptive mother spoke next; “Well they’re not mine…heavens those would swallow me up.” Though she was smaller than my sister and I both, it still stung as I watched the animated indignation rise in her face. This whole time my father was just horse laughing at every gesture and word. “Well I don’t think they are mine, I wear cotton only”……I added. My sister looked closely and wrinkled her brow…“I don’t think their mine either” …..she said with a seemingly confused face.
At that point my ever amusing husband addressed my sister…...”They have got to be yours.” “You don’t know if their mine”….. she said defensively. “Their yours…. they’ve been hanging out of your pants leg all night”……. he enthusiastically said with a grin. The room exploded with laughter as my sister stood there in humorous disbelief, half laughing and have in shock. At that point there was no denying that the “bloomers” were indeed….. hers. The unmentionables had gotten stuck in the leg of her pants when she had done laundry earlier that day.
We have often remembered the underwear story with the same enthusiasm we shared then, it’s just always funny. Thinking about it this past Christmas made me stop and think….how many times is there something (SIN) hiding under the surface that we can’t see at first glance? Whatever sin we tuck away may be fooling everyone around us but we’re not fooling God…..and eventually it can and will come out in some shape or fashion.
It is so hard to live an authentic Christian life. One that is real in God’s eyes and in private. There are so many sins that encompass living authentically. Let’s face it …..living out the fruit of the spirit and the ten commandments in a faithful manner is difficult in this day and time with all the stresses and temptations that abound. One thing is for sure, we can’t live authentic if we are not opening our bibles and spending time with God on a daily basis. Nothing about our secrets can change if we don’t allow the spirit to work in us and change us. It concerns us all to recognize our weaknesses and deal with them…..or our sins will come out sooner or later.
How many times have we been caught repeating gossip and are exposed? How many times have we been caught in a lie? Or our less than favorable actions have been revealed? Almost daily in the media we see celebrities, politicians and even Christian’s with a public platform, fall from grace when some deep, dark secret is brought to light. It’s never pretty when our sin is laid out in a public fashion. My daddy used to quote a portion of scripture from Numbers 32:23 that still makes me shudder…..
“Be sure your sins will find you out.”
This reminds me of the story of David and Bathsheba. David sinned against God and slept with another man’s wife. After Bathsheba became pregnant with David’s child, he proceeded to manipulate and hide his trespass. David sinned further by sending Bathsheba’s honorable husband, Uriah, to the front lines of war and instructed the ranks to pull back and abandon Uriah so that he would meet certain death. David then took Bathsheba as his wife. (2nd Samuel 11:27)
In 1 Corinthians 10:13 it says…..
“There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
This verse tells us that he will help us run from temptation so that we don’t fall into a pit of deception riddled with sin and secrets. God gives us what we need to always make the right choice….even when we don’t.
Living a double minded life can and will catch up with us. HE knows when we are faithful and when we are not. HE doesn’t tolerate unfaithfulness forever…..and HE will always be our final judge.
It wasn’t long until the prophet, Nathan, confronted David with his sins. If we continue living secret sins whatever they may be…..make no mistake……God will confront us. David faced the consequences of his trespasses in the public arena for many years. The child born in sin was struck down by God and David was publicly humiliated by his off spring even years later. (2nd Samuel 12:1-25) But the story doesn’t end with condemnation. After David repented God forgave him…..and restored him.
May we all desperately seek God’s word and learn from the mistakes of our bible heroes. May we all fall on our face and reject our secret sins…..begging God for forgiveness…..restoration…. and favor.
I am so thankful that when my stinking thinking or flesh causes me to sin….My God is full of grace.
Living authentically with no secrets should be every Christian’s goal. God help us all to live in truth….and to never live a double life that could lead us to ruin.