The great evangelist D.L. Moody told a story of a lady in the north of England who said that every time she got down before God to pray, five bottles of wine came up before her mind. She had taken them wrongfully one time when she was a housekeeper, and had not been able to pray since. She was advised to make restitution.
"But the person is dead," she said.
"Are not some of the heirs living?"
"Yes, a son."
"Then go to that son and pay him back."
"Well," she said, "I want to see the face of God, but I could not think of doing a thing like that. My reputation is at stake."
She went away, and came back the next day to ask if it would not do just as well to put that money in the treasury of the Lord.
"No," she was told, "God doesn't want any stolen money. The only thing is to make restitution."
She carried that burden for several days, but finally went into the country, saw that son, made a full confession and offered him a five-pound note. He said he didn't want the money, but she finally persuaded him to take it, and came back with a joy and peace that made her face radiant. She became a magnificent worker for souls, and led many into the light.
"My dear friends", Moody concluded, "get these stumbling stones out of the way. God does not want a man to shout "Hallelujah" who doesn't pay his debts or confess his sins. Many of our prayer meetings are killed by men trying to pray who cannot pray because their lives are not right. Sin builds up a great wall between us and God. A man may stand high in the community and may be a member of some church "in good standing," but the question is, how does he stand in the sight of God?
If there is anything wrong in you life, make it right."
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