What do shopping coupons have in common with vacation time you earn at work?
Of course, we all wish that we could get coupons for vacation time but I’m not aware of any employer that does that… In addition, that’s not the answer I’m looking for.
Here’s a hint: It has to do with how long you have to redeem them.
Okay, I’m sure you’ve gotten it by now.
They’re both ruled by the principle of “use it or lose it.“
In life, there are countless versions of this principle all around us. In addition to vacation time and shopping coupons, what about our muscles? If we don’t exercise them, they grow weaker. What about our minds? Like other muscles, if we don’t use it, we tend to lose our capacity to use it – well.
If you think about it, there are very few things on earth that don’t adhere to this principle – especially if you consider effort as the thing you must use.
After all, nothing happens without something causing it to happen.
In light of this, I consider “use it or lose it” a universal principle.
Fortunately for us, God’s love for us and the providence of His word isn’t one of them. It cannot be taken away and will never leaves us.
But, we can certainly leave it.
The most common way of that happening is that we stop reading our Bible and praying. These are the things that God set aside for us to keep our relationship with Him strong.
Today’s Tiny Words. Big Life. quote tells us of another way to maintain a close relationship with God – through praise and worship for who He is and what He’s done.
But, it’s sad to say and unwise to do, it’s something we often put off until tomorrow…
To receive the power that God gives us, we must not push Him away.
If we give God the credit for the things we enjoy and encounter in life, and not all of them are enjoyable by the way, but we give it over to God in praise, our spirit will be close with God and our lives will be enriched to receive His blessings.
Today’s Tiny Words. Big Life. Bible verse comes from King David in the book of Psalms. Although there are many chapters and moments in Psalms where David praises God for who He is and what He has done, this particular Psalm does it perhaps best of all.
Most biblical scholars put the timeline of this writing as coinciding with the arrival of the Ark of the Covenant in Jerusalem, a time of joyous celebration for Israel’s victory over it’s enemies and God’s faithfulness.
But it wasn’t always like that… there were many times that Israel strayed from the Word and let themselves think that all they had was due to their efforts – not those of God.
Those times are well-documented in the Bible. They became slaves to ruthless kings. Their land was taken from them. Their possessions were plundered. They wandered in the desert for their disobedience.
I often wonder how could that happen? Here was Israel, after all that God had visibly done for them… how could they turn their back on Him?
The answer for them is the same as it is for us today. They were broken. They lived, as we do, in a broken world. We’re bent toward sin and the tendency to think that everything comes from the things we do. We think of ourselves as the god of our lives, rather than Him who makes all things possible.
Nothing could be farther from the truth.
Which is why we should praise God – constantly.
The Tiny Words. Big Life. takeaway is this: Pray to see the things we have as gifts from God. Give Him praise for His undying, never-ending love. Thank Him for the gift of His son, Jesus Christ – the only path to eternal salvation with Him.
And the next time you’re able to go on a much-needed vacation from the savings you earned by clipping coupons, praise God for the ultimate coupon you’ve been given for eternal life with Him.
But, remember this… the day you depart this world is the coupon’s expiration date.
So, don’t wait on tomorrow because tomorrow may never come.
Use it. Don’t lose it.
34 Proclaim the power of God,
whose majesty is over Israel,
whose power is in the heavens.
35 You, God, are awesome in your sanctuary;
the God of Israel gives power and strength to his people.
Praise be to God!