I was getting a propane tank for the grill along with some mulch and soil from Home Depot the other day and accidentally stole a 20oz Coke. You see, I got the propane tank first and as I cruised to the other side of the store where the mulch is located I grabbed a coke along the way to drink.
As I was checking out, I totally forgot about the Coke (which was buried under the mulch and soil). Turns out I didn't pay for it. I didn't realize it until I was on my way home. I took a sip from the Coke and realized what had happened.
My first thought was "go back and pay for it." Then a second thought creeped in: "its Home Depot, they make a killing off me every year, its just a Coke. They'll never miss it."
I actually thought about not going back to pay for it and to be honest, I didn't go back until the next day (not because I was wrestling with whether or not to go back, I knew I would go back and pay for it). The point is, its so easy to justify small sins. Stealing a Coke seems so much smaller than stealing a car. But, spiritually its just as big. Notice I didn't say "Morally its just as big." While I do think its also a moral issue, for me, spiritual issues always trump moral issues and this was definitely a spiritual issue for me.
It was a spiritual issue because there was something inside of me that could justify not going back to pay for it. It was an automatic thought. This experience revealed that something inside of me is not right. That I still need God to work in my life and purge me of some junk that's there. Junk that's as simple as whether or not to steal a Coke. It still seems like a little thing to me even now, but I still believe something bigger was going on. Something bigger than myself.
It did feel good to go back and pay for that Coke. Maybe sinning isn't the only thing that feels good after all.