“Free”

Last week I listed an item in the free section of our local Craigslist group. I thought, we’ll just give it away free, be a blessing to someone else. Easy peasy right? Not so much. On the first day several people were interested, so I contacted the first person who had responded. She said great, yes, I want it! So I wait all day. No show. Day two different person, much the same thing. Rather frustrating.

Mind you, I’m giving you the Reader’s Digest Condensed version. Suffice it to say there were multiple texts to multiple people, before someone finally showed up to take it on Day 3. I thought to myself, it shouldn’t be this hard! It’s not like we’re asking for money or anything else. We are just looking to give something away free to whosoever will come and get it. I don’t know about you, but I don’t always have a lot of patience when people say they want something, and then don’t come and get it or even call. I mean really! It was free!

Then it occurred to me. Can we not be like this with the Lord sometimes? Jesus died on the cross for us, so that we could have the free gift of salvation, which includes eternal life with Him. Yet how many times a day, does He stand knocking at the door of millions or even billions of peoples hearts, only to have them not be willing to receive their free gift? There’s no cost to us, Jesus already paid the price.  But still He waits, patiently knocking. We don’t have to be the first one to answer an ad. His offer is for everyone, and available to anyone that chooses to accept it.

I’m so thankful that He doesn’t just lose patience with us, give up, and walk away. Aren’t you? I wonder how many times He knocked on the door of my heart, before I opened it and received Him and His gift? How many times did He knock on yours? Is He still knocking and waiting for you to allow Him to come in? If so, what are you waiting for? None of us are promised tomorrow, and I assure you there is nothing or no one else in this world that can compare.

 Salvation is the most wonderful gift we could ever receive. And along with that gift we get so much more.

We get to have a personal relationship with the Creator of the universe. Someone who loves us unconditionally all the time. Someone we can talk to 24/7, 365 days a year. We become a new creature in Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:17: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

All the promises in the Word are now ours. Everything that the Lord says about us in the Bible, or anything it says is ours, we are free to claim as our own.

When we receive Jesus we become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. We become children of God and joint heirs with Jesus. We are blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. We’re the head and not the tail. We’re the light of the world and the salt of the earth. Ambassadors for Christ. We have the mind of Christ, and redemption through His Blood. We are accepted in the beloved and more than conquerors through Him who loved us.         

There’s so much more! Jesus came that we may have life, and have it more abundantly. He gave us His whole armor that we may be able to stand against the wiles of the enemy. We are redeemed from the curse of the law because Jesus became a curse for us. We are called of God and He has a plan for our lives.

I could keep on going and going but there’s not enough space to cover everything. When have you ever been offered anything so wonderful? Jesus came to earth as a baby so that He could later die as a sinless man to reconcile us to God, thus making the way for us to receive His ultimate gift. The Lord loves us so much He does not want anyone to be lost.  2 Peter 3:9 tells us “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. 

We do not have to get our lives in order and be perfect before we turn to Jesus. Romans 5:8 states “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” While we were still sinners. Not while we were already perfect. Our part is just to be willing to turn to Jesus as our Savior and be willing to let Him be the Lord of our lives.

There is only one path to God and that is through Jesus. When Jesus was speaking in John 14:6, He said “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

If we choose not to take things like my free Craigslist item, or the multiple “free” things we may be offered online everyday, it’s not a big deal. We may not get the free item but it doesn’t affect our eternal lives. If we choose not to receive Jesus there are eternal consequences. Heaven is real but so is Hell. The Lord loves us so much He doesn’t want anyone to go there. 

There are multiple scriptures in the Bible that talk of Hell. Matthew 13: 49-50 is just one example.  So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just, and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.”Hell is not a place where anyone would willingly want to be. 

The Lord is a gentleman. He will not force His way into your life. He gave us free will, it’s up to us to choose. God does not send anyone to Hell. Those who exercise their free will by deciding not to accept Jesus will spend eternity separated from Him in Hell. It’s our choice where we will spend eternity.

Choose wisely. Your life depends on it.

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