i was working the register at the store i work at a few weeks ago when a woman bought a few items that were on clearance.
at the time we had a large clearance section, upon which we were advertising an additional 50% off. 50% clearance = THE CHEAP.
so i rang up the items, told her they'd rung up as cheaper, and gave her the total.
she was astounded. "that is what i'm talking about," she said.
and then the words i've used for the title of this post smacked me straight in the face.
Jesus is not that feeling we get when that item doesn't cost as much as we thought, when it's not as hard as we anticipated. nothing about the walk in His footsteps is easy. it costs us everything we ever dreamed, everything we ever wanted.
i'm not perfect. i mess up pointing to Jesus far more than i ever succeed at it. i don't want this series to be a list of dos or don'ts.
what i do want it to be is recommendations from someone who has tried it one way and found it didn't work. recommendations from someone who has found a different way, a way that is working. recommendations from someone who is still trying to navigate, hesitantly, what it means to live in a fashion patterned after His heart.
i can tell you the first and the last time you will hear the words "pray" and "read your bible" as advice are in this very sentence. i spent fifteen years listening to those words and they didn't change a thing. talking and reading don't change hearts.
so i can write this series, and you can read it, and it can do nothing. it can. words are only figments of our imagination until we give them meaning anyway.
or we can ponder them. we can pray over them, we can discuss them, we can seek His will in them, and they will take life, not only in the moments we spend here as a community, but in our lives, in our hearts, in our very being.
i'll be honest: i took my life out of His hands the other day, told Him i wasn't doing something i felt pretty clear He had told me to do. so i'm feeling all sorts of extra unworthiness when i think about entering His presence and seeking His face right now. but that's another reason i want to do it together.
i want to find that joy again. that passion. that feeling that reaches deep, far further down than that feeling when you score 50% off clearance, that grips you tight in His love and grace and mercy and holds you securely in the palms of His mighty hands. that feeling when you know, this is what i'm supposed to be doing.
i'm just stumbling right now. and yes, i'm about to write a series on practical faith. ha!
but when it's the full price He calls for, and the price is life and He's already paid, then there's nothing for us to do...
but look to what He has for us ahead.