In The Old Curiosity Shop by Charles Dickens, a tale is told of a girl and her grandfather. Nell is a virtuous girl of fourteen, that has nothing but love for her grandfather. But the tale is tragic, as her grandfather suffers from a severe addiction to gambling. Eventually the two become beggars as a result of the grandfather’s gambling habits. Nell is such a sweet girl, and never strays from her grandfather’s side. During the tale, the reader learns to care for and relate to Nell, and hopes that she and her grandfather will have a happy ending. But sadly they do not. Nell dies from the horrible life that her grandfather caused, and soon after he does as well.
Dickens could have easily made a happy ending in this book, but I don’t think it would have had the same impact on its readers. The gambling addiction of the grandfather was a dreadful sin that turned out to be more than just financially costly. The point came across to me loud and clear: the wages of sin is death.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
Continuing to nurture our sins will ultimately lead to trouble and tragedy in our lives. If only the grandfather could have broken the curse of gambling in his life for the love of his granddaughter and the Lord. How differently the story would have been, were that the case.
Gambling addiction may be an obvious problem, but there are many sins in our lives that aren’t as obvious. We should continually examine our lives for the sake of our loved ones and ourselves. Let there not be death anymore, but Eternal Life from our Heavenly Father.