Whoever covers an offense seeks love,
but he who repeats a matter separates close friends. Proverbs 17:9 ESV
Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. I Peter 4:8 ESV
Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven,
whose sin is covered. Psalm 32:1 ESV
Diane had stolen some money from her teacher’s purse during recess. Her teacher found out what had happened, and Diane had to return the money. She was suspended from school for one day. The other students didn’t know why Diane had been suspended, but then she told her friend Linda. Linda told a lot of the other kids what had happened, and suddenly Diane didn’t have any friends. They all stayed away from her and wouldn’t talk to her, and they called her “thief” at recess. Diane was sorry she had stolen the money, and he had apologized to her teacher and promised not to steal again. But now she had lost her friends because Linda had spread a negative story about her.
Proverbs says that it is the loving thing to do to cover an offense or a sin. That means not telling other people when we know something bad about someone else. It isn’t everyone’s business when someone sins, and telling people only spreads bad feelings and hurts friendships. It doesn’t matter if the story is true or not. It just isn’t loving to say hurtful things about other people when it isn’t their business to know. Sometimes it’s right or necessary to tell your parents or teacher or another trusted adult to make sure that wrong things can be made right, but when it comes to talking to other people who aren’t involved it’s better to love the person who did the bad thing and to let the love cover that sin.
Jesus’ love covers all our sins. He lived a perfect life and never sinned against his heavenly Father, and his goodness covers our sins. He paid for all our sins at the cross, and because he did that we know that God will always forgive our sins. When we have Jesus’ love in our lives, we have love to share with other people, and we want to cover their sins the way Jesus covers all our sins.
Dear Jesus, thank you for covering our sins with your love. Please give us your love to share with others. Amen.