Chug-a, Chug-a

Tuesday, November 13, 2018
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "The Little Brown Church In The Vale"1 (Lyrics)

A week or so ago, I went to the bank on my way to work to take out some cash using the automatic teller. I wanted to take out $280. I'd done so on numerous occasions before, so I wasn't paying a lot of attention to what I was doing. This time, however, as I pressed the "Enter" button, I noticed that I'd put in an extra zero. Instead of $280, the screen read $2,800 just before it disappeared. I must have held my finger on the button too long.

"Wait", I thought. "I don't want that much cash!" But the machine had already started to process my request. I could hear it working behind the screen: Chug-a, chug-a. Chug-a, chug-a. I pressed the "Cancel" button but to no avail. Chug-a, chug-a.

I pressed the "Clear" button. Nothing. Chug-a, chug-a.

"Now, what?" I wondered, slightly panicked. "I'm going to go into my line of credit. I don't want to go into my line of credit!" Chug-a, chug-a.

"Maybe the machine will reject my request," I hoped. Chug-a, chug-a. Chug-a, chug-a.

It took the machine a few minutes to count out that much cash. As I waited to see what would happen, it kept working away. Chug-a, chug-a. Chug-a, chug-a. Finally, it spewed out the money. I looked around to see if anyone was watching me with that much cash. Nobody was, so I stuffed it in my pocket and left. I got in my car, and with nobody around, I counted it. It was correct. Whew! So, I continued on to work.

Later, at lunch, as my wife and I were laughing over my mistake, we started comparing it to sin. (We do that kind of thing.) Just like what happened after the button was pushed on the machine, once the sin is committed, we have to live with the consequences. The machine was unforgiving and just kept on doing what I'd told it to do. However, unlike the machine, once we make a mistake and sin, we have a Saviour in Jesus who forgives us if we confess our sin and repent of it.

1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (NKJV)

Of course, it's better not to make a mistake and sin in the first place, just as it's better not to make a mistake on the bank machine. But, having made Him the Lord of your life, if you do sin — and we all do — aren't you glad that you believe in the One who offers forgiveness? I know that I am!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son to pay for our mistakes and transgressions. Thank You, Jesus, for forgiveness. We'd be lost without You. In Your holy name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Steve Ollerenshaw <>
Belleville, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks, Steve, for the good word.

    Done it myself. Good story. Thanks.

    Thanks, Steve. Lord, keep us from pushing that button!

    Great Sharing. Too funny,

    Great story … and great message! I think I will take it to read at the next church breakfast.

    That was such a good devotional, could feel your panic!!! And so true about sin.
    God bless.

    Hi Steve,
    That one extra zero sure did cause a lot of error and confusion. I liked how you compared it to sin. Blessings to you today.

    I love such a devotional as this one of yours today, that sticks in the brain and comes back to teach and shine the light of God’s goodness on us. Thank you for this particularly astute one as it helps me again today, Steve. I am grateful.

    Oh, thank you, Steve, for sending this thought. What an experience you had! I can visualize the scene. Yes, whenever we make mistakes, our dear Lord is so much more forgiving than a banking machine.
    May God bless your day today.

    Well, I wish our ATM would give out more than $200. Maybe I should move to Canada; however, it happens to be cold today in Texas, enough to last me for a while.
    Thanks, Steve, for your devotional… of making something out of an everyday occurrence. We can all benefit from looking at life from that perspective.

    What an experience! Thanks for sharing the lesson learned with us and for writing this devotional. Isn’t it wonderful how God can bring good from our mistakes! By the way, whatever did you do with all that cash? Apply it to your line of credit? That’s what makes sense to me. Then you and your bank manager could share a good laugh… or maybe not. Praying everything is ok now. Blessings.

    Hello Steve,
    Thanks for your devotional. Quite a happening to experience at the click of a machine button! We can easily commit a sin so quickly also but thankfully we have our Lord to turn to and receive His forgiveness and encouragement to follow the right path.
    Blessings to you.

    Dear Steve,
    I felt compelled to comment on your daily devotion of today “Chug-a, Chug-a” but actually about the very irresponsible bank that you bank with. That’s right, they are irresponsible, not you. Sure, you got a bit careless and made a mistake but what if you were forced to withdraw that much under duress?
    The bank that I deal with has a fixed daily ATM withdrawal limit of $500. This is for my own protection should someone steal my card for forces me to withdraw money under duress. A limit like this would have automatically rejected a withdrawal request for $2800.
    You need to speak with your bank about this for your own protection.
    God bless!

    Good one Steve!

    To Steve Ollerenshaw,
    Thanks so much for a real gospel message.
    We pray for power not to sin, knowing the grief sin costs our Lord.
    Keep writing.

    “Wow”! I can just imagine how your heart must have been pounding!
    Thanks for sharing this.
    I will be speaking to my bank to place an override on the amount limited.
    These days you just don’t know who is watching!!
    God is indeed an amazing God, and “yes” he watches over his children.
    Have a blessed week Steve.

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