There are a lot of
things going through my mind as I start this not the least of which is that
there is no way I am ever going to be able to pay back everyone for the
kindnesses my family and I have received over the last 3 years. There are two main reasons for this. ONE:
even if I had been keeping track of all the monetary kindness I have
been shown, there is plenty that I haven't known of, and even more that nobody
would ever cop to because of the desire to remain anonymous. TWO:
many of the gifts and kindnesses I have received are priceless and, as
such, I couldn't even begin to assign a dollar value, or even hope to repay the
favor exactly. For how does one place a
price-tag on a well-timed sermon that is just what you need right when you need
it? How does one place a dollar value on
a hug from a friend?
Nobody is asking me
to pay them back. That's not where I'm
going with this at all. No, what I'm
thinking about has more to do with the my inability to ever fully repay a debt
when I cannot even comprehend its breadth.
Sounds a little like having one's sins paid for by someone who never
knew sin, who was perfect.
The friends and
church family who have helped me out so much, who have been there for me in
ways I will likely never be able to comprehend, in many ways, I feel I owe my
life to them. Maybe not literally, but
figuratively for sure. There was nothing
I could've done to deserve their kindness.
They just felt compelled to bless me and my family out of their own
blessings. As a friend of mine said
today, "What? It's not ours
anyway. We're just giving it back to
God." Knowing that is the truth,
but really experiencing the truth of it are two TOTALLY different things. And if I feel like I could never repay these
people for their kindness, and like I owe them a debt of gratitude for just
making my life possible for the time being, how much more do I owe Christ who
has, most assuredly, given His very life for me and, with his sacrifice, has
paid my way into Heaven by paying off debts I didn't even know I owed. Is my obedience enough? Is my praise enough? My worship?
I could be cliché and say that I would pledge my undying devotion to
Him, but I'm human, and that'd be a lie.
The truth is that my devotion will wane.
It has many times in the past, and likely it will in the future because
I forget just how much I've been given and forgiven. Then, something will happen that will remind
me, and once again, I will be "on fire" for Jesus again. Until the next time.
Why is it always
like this? Because, far too often, I
forget to remind myself of what all God has done for me. I get bogged down in the busy-ness and
daily-ness of life, and I forget to remind myself of the gospel of Jesus Christ
that says I was a sinner and I needed a Savior.
I can even take it
one step farther. Given all that I have
received so freely from a God that I could never repay, how could I hold onto
that gift so selfishly? I did nothing to
deserve it. I could never earn it. And yet, I benefit from the blessing of that
gift everyday. Yet, when it comes time
to share with others, I balk. I let fear
stand in the way. Where's the undying
devotion then? Where is my
obedience? My praise? My worship of the God that made my very life
what?! This week the county fair
starts. Our church has an evangelism
booth at said fair. I've worked the fear
a couple of times, and have always let fear stand in the way of my saying
anything substantial to passers-by, or even to those who stop. Perhaps there is a reason I am having these
thoughts and feelings on the eve of the week that I am scheduled for two shifts
at that booth………..