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Hidden fees.

read the fine print

I tried doing that with the title, but it wouldn’t let me. Reckon I might have need to learn this a little better to make it do what I want. BUT, I can recall several times I was buying something, signing a contract for one thing or another, perhaps a credit card or loan application, a lease, whatever it may be and the salesman, agent, whoever,  would always point out the obvious things, the big stuff, the easy to read things. However they would often either ignore or gloss over the smaller details. They would very quickly mention something or the other about additional fees, dealer prep, interest rates that change under certain circumstances (yet the company or agent often encouraged one to do those things that would increase the cost) or other restrictions, limitations, items in the contract that would cost me more or put me into an undesired obligation otherwise. (anyone remember those adds for the record clubs, 20 albums or cassettes for a penny?)

So many times, I have saved myself a lot of heartache by reading the fine print. Sadly, that only happened after more than a couple lessons learned the hard way. Paying a bigger price in the long run for something. In dollars, or other ways. Almost all transactions have hidden fees, taxes at stores, delivery fees and many other ways they add to the cost.

For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? Matthew 16:26

But, what about the spiritual hidden costs? I have cost myself spiritually, hurt my relationship with Christ. At times turned my back on Him. All because of my choices, bad choices. At times, I convinced myself that my goal was good, and thereby the means justified the ends. But, the actions, the means to achieve the goal, were not always right. I didn’t steal or lie but I didn’t serve Jesus. At times, just slightly compromised myself, but one compromise makes it a little easier to compromise further, and further, and further. Yes, compromise in my believes, compromise in my values, compromise in my Christian life slowly at first, then more quickly, cost me the relationship with Christ I should have had all along. It caused hurt for people, including myself. I let others convince me, sometimes well meaning others, that doing a wrong was okay, as long as the goal was good for me. No, that isn’t how it works, the way to the goal is as important as the goal. Shortcuts don’t work, not waiting and walking the path He has for us, taking the easy path to move down the road of life, to get where we want and get what we want. Taking the easy route is NEVER the right way.

And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 2 Corinthians 11:14

Yes, I cost myself a lot, was definitely close to losing my soul. No, I didn’t forsake God for money, not directly, but got so focused on my career I did not serve Christ. I served me. I accepted favors to get what I wanted, let someone essentially bribe me not with money but maybe promises of return of a favor, getting what I want, but obligating myself and compromising my walk with God. Just to take the easy, fast path. Knowing Christ was with me before, then walking away from His path.

But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, Philippians 3:7-8

 

Now, Don’t let me fool you into thinking that serving Jesus does not have a cost. BUT….the cost is that we give Him something that is worthless without God. It would be like taking bag of rags to the store and walking out with a complete, brand new wardrobe. No, something much better. I give trash, He gives riches beyond believe. I give Him something that should require me to pay to get someone to take it away. But Christ REWARDS ME for handing Him my garbage. The wreck I had made of my life was of no value. Yet, He forgave me, made me a new, better man. I still stumble, thoughts at times less kind than they should be, but I watch myself and usually stop before it is anymore than a fleeting thought. I praise Him for all Jesus has done for me, and is continuing to do.

 

And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory, Romans 9:23

O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!              Romans 11:33

 

In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace; Ephesians 1:7

Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. Revelation 5:12

The scriptures that discuss the riches of His glory, our rewards for serving Him. Yes, serving Christ has hidden costs, but those are not only next to nothing, they are nothing. The cost was the worthlessness of my existence, the destruction I had made of my life, the emptiness, the vacuum of my heart. THOSE are the cost, but OH THANK YOU LORD! The riches He gives me, Peace, Joy, Life Eternal with Him. If  you can find a credit card that gives you bonus points like that, you would be a fool not to get one. Talk about your reward points!

Lord, I praise you. I thank you for your mercy and kindness.

 

 

 

 

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