My son and daughter-in-law have experienced a really great blessing during their time in seminary. The school has a “store” where students are allowed to take food, clothing, or household items without paying. They are encouraged to donate items whenever they can, but as long as they are enrolled in school, they can shop and “purchase” a certain number of items each time at no cost.
Talk about a great way to save money as a newly married couple! My son even got re-introduced to the wonderful powdered milk he grew up on as a baby! “Great on cereal,” he told me, “though adding vanilla helps with the flavor.”
As I thought about this blessing in their life, I could not help but think about the even greater blessing we receive through Christ.
Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and you will delight in the richest of fare.Isaiah 55:1-2 NIV
In comparing the two blessings, I realize that students can only buy without cost, because others have donated freely. They have given of their excess to benefit those who come behind.
For us, who are dying of spiritual thirst, the abundant life we freely receive in Christ has also come at a cost—not ours, but his. It is only because Jesus willingly gave his life on the cross for our sake, that we can benefit with access to the Father for eternity.
The free gift of abundant life in Christ is the richest of fare.
No, nothing can compare to what we receive freely in Christ Jesus. We can get glimpses of what it means through acts of charity and temporal sacrifice, but his gift cost so much more.
Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!Philippians 2:6-8
Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!
Take time today to invite others to take part in this amazing gift.
Grace and Peace