Too Good To Be True

Too Good To Be True!

I remember receiving an invitation to attend the "Soft Opening" of one of the newest restaurants in town. In case you don't know, a "Soft Opening" allows the restaurant a chance to try everything out (spill a few drinks, burn a few burgers, etc.) before the big opening day. No one really cares because the place is filled with friends and family members.

Now, I'm not usually a big spender (and love to use a coupon when I can) but decided to loosen up a bit this evening. I allowed the kids to get whatever they wanted. After all, we knew a lot of the people attending, and I didn't want everyone to see just how cheap I can be.

For instance:
Usually when we go out, everyone gets water. There's no need to argue because drinks are around $2.50 each. I'm not paying $10 for Cokes!!! For that price, I'll go to the gas station across the street, buy a few 2 liters and bring them inside.

BUT that night was different. The girls were too excited when I spoke up and proclaimed, "Cokes for everyone!"

Also, I rarely get any "extras" because each little thing adds up. So, when the waiter asks if I would like to "add" cheese, bacon or a side item, my knee-jerk reaction is automatically, "No thanks. I'm not made of money, you know." OK, maybe I don't always say that last part (but I'm always thinking it).

However, that night I was feeling a bit "giddy" and upsized my platter. Oh yeah, now we're cookin'.

And get this, we even got appetizers. Not one... but TWO!

I know what you're thinking, "Jimmy needs to get out more." The fact is, I just don't like racking up a HUGE bill. Maybe there are some of you who feel the same way.

I held my breath when I saw the bill and realized it was twice as much as it normally would cost us to eat out. But that's OK; we brought this all on ourselves. Each line item added up to a whopping result.

Then something amazing happened. When I went to the cashier, she rang everything up, repeated the total and (with a smile on her face) simply said, "Thank you. Your bill has been paid. Enjoy the evening."

Seriously?!?! I was in shock but seem to remember jumping in the air, tapping my heals together and then running around giving fist bumps to random strangers.

We're beginning a new series this Sunday titled "Too Good To Be True." Each message leading up to Easter will focus on the Amazing Grace of God.

One of my favorite pieces of Scripture speaks of God's grace in this way: "You were saved by faith in God, who treats us much better than we deserve. This is God's gift to you, and not anything you have done on your own." Ephesians 2:8

Imagine your life's offenses all tallied up, recorded, and billed to you. As you look over the list, you realize that each offense adds up. There's no denying how much damage you've done. And anxiety sets in when you understand that the total amount owed is too much. There's no way you could possibly pay for it all. And as you plead your case, the judge smiles and simply says, "Your bill has been paid!"

We definitely don't deserve the grace of God, and yet He offers it to everyone.

No matter where you are...

No matter what you've done...

No matter the offense...

No matter the total amount of damage...

God's grace covers it all. And that's Good News!

It's really "Too Good To Be True." But it's TRUE nonetheless!

Looking forward to being back with you this Sunday!