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June 24, 2021

Ann Farabee column: The stain

By Ann Farabee

I stepped away for just a second. It was long enough for her paper towel bib to be removed and the bowl of spaghetti to land on the front of the white shirt.

She screamed, “It won’t come off! It won’t come off!”

She tried to wipe it away with all her might — as sauce and spaghetti noodles flew.

No, it won’t, sweetheart.

It won’t come off.

Apparently, it was more than a 4-year-old can endure, because tears came. Although I was the one who should be crying, I tried to comfort her. After I convinced her to take the shirt off and exchange it for a clean one, I tried to blot the stain out.

Blotting it out did not work.

I then began washing it in an attempt to remove the red stains from the white shirt.

I soon realized I had used every stain removal technique in my repertoire.

The stain remained.

It could not be made white again.

It was stained beyond repair.

It had lost its value.

Something about that white garment stained to a crimson red made a connection in my spirit.

It reminded me:

Sin will stain what it touches.

But there is a solution that can take away the stain and blot out our transgressions.

Isaiah 1:18 says, “Though our sins be as scarlet, they shall be made white as snow.”

1 John 1:7 says, “The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin.”

Isaiah 43:25 says, “I am he that blots out your transgressions and will not remember your sins.”

What can wash away our sins?

Nothing but the blood of Jesus.

Oh, precious is the flow

That makes us white as snow.

Sin won’t win.

The stain won’t remain.

Ann Farabee is a teacher, writer and speaker. Contact her at or

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