|Vol. 13 No. 4 April 2011||
Dillard Thurman (deceased)
As I passed by a show window, my eye was attracted by a charming display of suits in the window. Each was set off to its best advantage and was so placed as to attract attention from every passerby. I gathered that the merchant was trying to sell suits.
I passed another building and in the window and around the outside of the building, I saw the latest models of automobiles. Each was attractively placed and each shown to its best advantage. I gathered that he was trying to sell automobiles.
As I passed a fruit stand, I was attracted by the glistening beauty of the fruit for the vendor had each one polished and only the most appealing was set out for display. I surmised that he was trying to sell fruit.
As I went on, I passed a pretty young woman. She was also very attractive. Special care had been employed to fix her hair in the latest fashion, her face was done just right; even her nails were painted. However, the display didn’t stop there. The latest “form aids” were enticingly used to effectively attract the attention of every male and all hindrances had been removed so as not to obstruct the view of the merchandise, for the pert young miss was hardly more than half-clothed! With her “wares” so openly displayed before everyone, I had to ask, “What is she trying to sell?”
For Christian women, it was said, “Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price” (1 Peter 3:3-4). A good woman will desire to advertise different merchandise than the “woman of the street.” Her display will be godliness and sobriety, not lustful enticements.
I heard an elder’s timely retort to that old charge that “Your mind is just in the gutter.” He replied, “If my mind is in the gutter, just remember who put it there.” That is an apt rebuttal against some of these “broad-minded” ones who persist in wearing clothes that hide very little. When our mother Eve ate the fruit of the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil,” she immediately put on clothes to hide her nakedness. When I see women underdressed or in lewd attire, I am persuaded that they have not eaten of that fruit and are still woefully ignorant. In this conclusion, I am only trying to be charitable.
A certain group of teens wanted to “raise awareness” about the plight of the homeless. They decided that for a week they would live like homeless people live. However, the activity was postponed due to weather! Isn’t that ironic? They said they wanted to live like the homeless, but don’t the homeless get rained on when it rains?
Most of us are real bargain hunters, aren’t we? Once, after a run-in a lady literally had with me that totaled my beautiful 1992 Dodge Dakota, which I bought for an amazingly low price, I had to spend State Farm’s money to buy a replacement vehicle. I had pretty big expectations. I wanted a pick-up truck, only 4 or 6 cylinders, with good gas mileage, seating for five, and all for the piddling amount allotted me. Eventually, I revised my expectations. I wanted good value, but I was also cost-conscious.
As gas prices go up, with all our economic uncertainties, we all do well to think about how much things cost. As good stewards of our finances, we never want to be wasteful (cf. Luke 16:1). In the spiritual realm, we are faced with a price to pay in order to become a Christian, and then to live the Christian life. Luke records Jesus’ teaching about this in Luke 14:26-35. He says, in essence, that when it comes to following Him there is a cost in terms of our earthly relationships (26), personal sacrifices (27), moral and spiritual endurance (28-32), financial resources (33), and spiritual choices and example (34-35).
You cannot become a Christian until you count the cost and make the decision to obey the Lord. So many choose family, comfort, compromise, material things or conformation over the One who gave everything for them. In what shape is your spiritual life? One way to measure that is by asking, “What does it cost you?”