We've all asked a similar question while shopping, haven't we?
We see something we like and we really want to buy it,
but the price tag determines whether or not it goes in our cart or not.
How much does it cost?
Is it worth the price?
Sometimes, in a second-hand store, we may be able to get the owner to lower the price a little bit for us,
making the purchase possible without costing "too much."
Suddenly, we are getting a bargain!
I love knowing something should have cost a lot more than it did,
and somehow I stumbled upon a great deal.
The day I first heard the story of what Jesus did for me on the cross,
I stumbled upon an unbelievable deal.
Eternal life - free.
Have you ever sang the song, "Freely, freely, you have received, freely, freely give."
Eph. 2:8 calls this offer of salvation a gift,
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--
and this is not from yourselves,
it is the gift of God-
Romans 6:23 says,
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
I love gifts!
I love when things are offered freely.
I especially love that God offered us the Hope of Heaven as a free gift.
And this Hope is something I wouldn't give up for ANYTHING.
But as I type those very words, I understand the irony of the Christian faith.
I grasp the complex nature of my walk with God.
Because while salvation is offered freely, there is a cost to being a disciple of Jesus.
When I have something in my life that I won't give up "no matter what,"
suddenly what I have becomes valuable, priceless, and extremely costly.
As I study the Bible and grow closer to God, and as I watch my kids begin to venture out in their personal journeys with Him,
I begin to understand the hard teachings of Jesus in Luke 14 when He says,
Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said:
"If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters-yes, even their own life-such a person cannot be my disciple.
And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.
"Suppose one of you wants to build a tower.
Won't you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it?
For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying,
'This person began to build and wasn't able to finish.'
Yes, the gift of eternal life is free to all of us.
But in order to follow Jesus completely it will cost us everything.
Hard to understand? Yes.
Worth it? Absolutely.
I love and hate at the very same time what Francis Chan has to say about the cost of following Jesus in the clip below.
If you have 10 minutes, I highly recommend you watch it.
It helped me this morning.
I love it because I know it's true.
I love it because I know that when I stand before the throne of God all the things of this earth will disappear and all that will matter is what I did with God's Son.
But I also hate what he says, because in a very real and powerful way I am living the "cost" of being a disciple every single day.
And so are my kids.
And it's not easy.
Trusting God means leaning on Him NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS on this earth.
There's just something about the words "no matter what" that take away any control I have over my life or my kids' lives.
So, today, I'm praying especially hard that God will increase my ability to trust Him....no matter what.
And I'm reminding myself that Jesus said being His disciple would cost me everything.