That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love. Ephesians, Chapter 3, verse 17.
I like the mental picture that I get when I think of Christ dwelling in my heart. I break His heart when I focus on making worldly choices. I get caught up in looking at all the angles to save a dime, not necessarily because I need to. It’s more of an intellectual challenge to find my very best deal and it’s exhilarating to find a bargain!
When I go to purchase things, I often look at all the prices that are stamped on the items. Sometimes they mislabel them, pricing an item considerably lower than all the rest. I know it must be some type of error but I’ve taken it to the cash register, exhilarated because I have found this great deal.
I try to rationalize it in my mind, saying that it’s the store’s fault for mislabeling things and they have to live up to their error or it is false advertising. Then I usually get a strong, intense feeling that I’m doing something against my religious principals. I know that I’m not being a good example of how God works in my life and I generally tell the cashier about the price difference.
I say generally, because writing this has made me aware that I just did this recently and I didn’t draw it to the cashier’s attention. We were driving through
on the way to see
my grandkiddos for Christmas. I have a
very good friend whose daughter collects Wizard of Oz memorabilia. I saw this figurine I wanted to get for her
daughter and I found one that was marked $3.00 less than all the others on the
shelf. I rationalized this by telling
myself that it’s from an older shipment that was marked the lower price,
thinking the newer ones were marked the higher price. This time, I never told the cashier. Kansas
I feel terrible about this, because I feel like I am being a hypocrite as I write this to you. It just so happened that I still had the receipt. I just went to see if it had an address on it, but it didn’t. Of course, that would have been the chicken way out! It would have been pretty easy to send this person $3.00 in the mail. It did have the phone number on the receipt, so I called.
I apologized and wanted her address to send her the money. (They don’t have mail service for the turnpike businesses.) When she told me that wasn’t necessary, I explained that I consider myself a Christian and needed to live by my Christian ethics and I hadn’t. I knew there had been a $3.00 difference in the price of the figurines and hadn’t brought it to her attention.
She told me not to worry about it, but I do—not because of the $3.00. It bothers me that I could find it so easy to backslide into old worldly ways when I think I’m making great strides at being the person that God wants me to be.
This has been a very humbling experience for me. Satan can sneak into our lives through very subtle things and I let him do it without even batting an eye! Fortunately, Jesus dwells in my heart and lets me know when I’m not living the life that He wants.
Because this is an example of how I've applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.