Worth

If It’s Free, It Isn’t Worth Much

Ed, my old neighbor from Saskatchewan, phoned last week with the sudden news he was going to be visiting us in two days. We were pretty excited and straightened up the condo for his visit. Ed was to arrive late afternoon last Friday. We told him that we would go out to eat supper after he arrived. Friday came and went with no visit from Ed.

As it turned out, Ed had been at Edmonton visiting his daughter, and he was offered a free ride to Chilliwack with his son-in-law who was traveling to Mission BC. That was why he called us. Before they could get away the next day, the son-in-law got called to work because of an emergency which ended his travel plans. Ed went home to Saskatchewan and forgot to tell us he wasn’t coming here as he indicated. My old neighbor said that his offer of a free ride to visit us turned out to be empty words. He also said that usually if something is yours for free, it isn’t worth much.

I told Ed that even if he had traveled for free with his son-in-law that it would have been both free and costly at the same time. His ride would have been free in the sense that he would have been riding in a vehicle that cost him nothing for gas, insurance, repairs, etc.  However, as soon as he would get into the passenger seat and buckled up, he would be committed to his son-in-law, the driver, with his very life. If his driver drove safely, he would be safe. If he would drive too fast or recklessly and would go off the road, or would be in an accident with another driver, Ed would have been too. That free ride would have put Ed’s life on the line.

Ed told me to be satisfied with something being free and ignore the fact that it could be costly at the same time. As Christians, we must balance both the freeness and costliness of faith in Jesus Christ.

Certainly, “God so (freely) loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them.” God freely loves and forgives us in Christ so that as we believe in Christ as our Savior we will follow him as he directs us. If we accept Jesus as our Savior, we must realize we are not driving or steering our lives as Jesus needs to be in the driver’s seat. Jesus made it clear when crowds or individuals wanted to follow him that it would mean leaving behind what and who they had

as most important to them.

Jesus must be both Savior and Lord of those who would be Christians. As Jesus took up his cross and sacrificed himself in obedience to God the Father, we must be willing to take up our cross of obedience in following Jesus as He leads us in living our lives. Saying that we believe in Jesus can be empty words, if we refuse to let him be the (Lord) driver of our lives.

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Raymond Maher
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