It doesn’t matter how many rights you have done in life. What people see clearly is that one thing you did wrong. That one wrong is like a single dent on a flashy brand new car.
The dent on a car can be fixed up to hide the blemish. Soon people forget that there was once a dent.
This is not so with a ‘dented’ person. The dent is engraved on the minds of those who have witnessed it happen and as long as they live, they will always remember that one dent that has spoilt everything about a whole person.
Trying to make everything right again, is like achieving the impossible. It won’t work to restore the complete trust of the people.
There once lived a man whom the people nicknamed Cobra. Cobra was a tie hard highway robber. He was in a gang and was the ring leader. Whenever he came back home from the city where he carried out his operations, people would be expecting his visit because, in the dead of the night, he would climb their fences and break into their houses to steal. The strange thing about Cobra was that no matter the height of one’s fence, he would climb it with his bare hand and feet. This was the time when people roofed their walls with a corrugated sheet. And it’s a wonder they didn’t hear the creaking noise of the sheet. He would do his thing without getting caught. People only woke up to their missing belongings. Since he was the only thief in their midst, they went straight to his parents to demand for their missing things. The parents never argued with them, they knew exactly where their son kept them, they would return their things because Cobra stole from them for fun. Probably to train and test his skills. He wasn’t going to do anything with their things anyway.
One day, Cobra decided to repent of his evil ways. He went to the church, confessed publicly and asked people to forgive him.
They hugged him and kissed his cheeks, and even ate with him but it all ended in the Church.
They all said they have forgiven him but for the rest of his thirty years, he remained a thief in their sights. When he wanted to settle down, no family wanted him as a son in law. Not even a distant town allowed him to marry any of their daughters. Even when he became a pastor and did morning cry to tell people to repent and come to God, people still called him a thief. He had no respect in his community. He was not regarded in meetings and gatherings. He had no friends because no one wanted to be identify with him. They knew the risk – if you become his friend, then you become a thief. A friend of a thief is a thief.
Even when Cobra died with his sins forgiven before God, Cobra remained Cobra and a thief before his community and extended family.
His blood – sons and daughters were seen as the sons and daughters of a hardened thief. They all lived in isolation because people warned their kids not to associate with them.
To make matters worse, one of his sons took after his old ways to confirm the fear of the people.
So that one sin, theft, ruined his life and his entire generation up to God knows which generation will be free. He spent the rest of his life cleaning up but never achieved complete trust.
That’s how life is.
Assuming that from infancy, you have lived a clean, spottless life and up to 80 years of age, people knew you as a good, reliable person. It takes only one crime for years of spottlessness to be ruined.
People don’t trust you anymore. They would always see you from afar with formidable horns, 😈 even though before God, you’re a Saint, 😇.
You don’t blame the people, crime is evil that remains long after a criminal is gone.
People that know this avoid crime like a plaque.
It’s true that what people think of you don’t matter. You know yourself and you know you have cleaned up, that’s what truly matters. Sin no more!
But the best thing is to try hard to stay away from crimes.
No man lives in isolation, it’s always better to avoid getting involved in a ‘dirty ‘ afair in the first place so as to keep the trust of the people around.