We had a man come into my place of work the other day and he immediately said, “I want to talk with the store manager.” The store manager wasn’t available for awhile, so he told me his problem.
It seems he had bought a lawnmower a little over a year ago and it just blew the engine. He wanted the store to give him a new one or credit towards a more expensive mower. In other words, to redeem the broken one and make it new in some way…that was a problem…
When the manager arrived, he explained that the store policy is that we will refund or replace up to 60 days on mowers, but the manufacturer has a one-year warranty (which was also past). I thought the manager did a good job or explaining all of this very patiently, but it was a problem with no cheap answer to make it right. I mean, that which regulates the transaction and responsibilities was clearly spelled out in the papers they were given…so what do you do?
This is similar to the problem each of us have today isn’t it? We as humans are broken and unfixable by human standards. Each of us has the problem of sin in our lives. It may not be a BIG easily recognizable sin, but to God, sin is sin. If you don’t obey his rules, then you can’t be fixed. God’s word tells us that all of us sin and fall short of God’s Glory, (Romans 3:23). While we are told in 1 John 1:7-10 that anyone who says they don’t sin is calling God a liar and that His Word is really not part of their lives. That is a problem isn’t it, because sin separates us form the source of life (eternally) God himself. When we sin, we are responsible for the cost for the damage to our lives, which is impossible for us to pay.
Fortunately, when God wrote his rules, he wrote in a redemption clause, an escape clause if you will. It’s spelled out clearly in his rule book (the Bible) in more than one place. Places like Mark 16:15-16 and Romans 6:1-10. We are told that the redemption we can experience is not dependent upon our own ability, but upon the willingness of Christ to pay what was necessary for us. What was required was a payment in blood; a payment of sacrifice; a payment of suffering to fix what you broke and for which you were responsible. He paid the debt he did not own, because he loves you that much! In return he asks the you obey him and commit to living by His rules to the best of your ability.
Now the man who came into our store was helped with his problem. We actually gave him a loner mower until he could check with the manufacturer. Redeemed or fixed no; we were just kind of able to put a bandage on the sore spot in hopes he can get it fixed properly some place else.
I see a lot of people who are putting band aids on their lives, they cover up the sore spot, but something is missing, something is hurting, something is lacking in their lives. It is the healing that comes from God when we finally decided to follow the rules in His Book the Bible. To embrace the need to sacrifice some things in our own lives, to gain eternal life.
Russ Lawson is a volunteer citizen columnist, who serves The Daily Advocate readers weekly with his column Today’s Challenges. He is semi-retired and an elder at the Mid-County Church of Christ. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.