Jim Burns Homeword Daily Devotional for Parenting and Christian Family

<< HomeWord, with Jim Burns

HomeWord - Apr. 6, 2010


A Stitch in Time Saves Nine 

This devotional was written by Kelly McFadden

Then the Lord said to Cain, "Why are you angry? Why is your face downcast?  If you do what is right, will you 
not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, 
sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it." —Genesis 4:6-7

Recently, I pulled a wrap from my closet to wear to a wedding, only to find a hole along the seam. I was in a hurry and didn't have time to fix it…and it was barely noticeable anyway. As the evening went on, however, the hole seemed to enlarge from the size of a penny to the size of a half dollar. By the time I got home, it was unmistakable.

There is an old saying that states, "A stitch in time saves nine."  What it means is that a little maintenance early on can help prevent major damage control later. Had I simply taken the time to stitch up the little hole when I first noticed it, I would not have been left with a gaping hole later.

The same thing is true with sin in our lives. Too often, we let little sins creep in, promising ourselves that it is no big deal or we'll take care of it later. Instead of taking care of the problem from the start, the small sins that seem so insignificant grow and change until they are bigger and often out of control. Each time we make a bad decision and choose to sin, it becomes harder and harder to fix the problem. A hole becomes a canyon, and the next thing you know, it feels like you are hanging on for dear life.

In the story of Cain and Abel from Genesis, the Lord speaks to Cain and tells him to beware, sin is waiting for him. Cain was consumed with jealousy and let it fester and grow until he snapped. When we choose to allow sins such as greed, anger or jealousy to go unaddressed in our lives, they become bigger and bigger to the point where we can end up out of control. We cannot conquer sin alone. With God's power, we can tackle sin so that it does not become our master.

Don't let the small temptations build up until they get out of control. Don't put off until tomorrow that which you can take care of today. It will only make the problem worse.


  1. Take a close look at your life. Are there little sins or choices you are making that seem insignificant right now?
  2. What are ways you can use God's strength to conquer the sinful areas in your life?

Matthew 7:15-20; Romans 5:12-21; Hebrews 4:11-16

Sign up here for Parenting Resources and other HomeWord publications.

More HomeWord, with Jim Burns Articles