Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I Really, Really, Want It!

Luke 14-28   For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?

We all have things that we want in life.  We see cars, homes, gadgets, and/or potential spouses and we just have to have them.  There are things that we did not have as a children growing up and as adults we tend to gravitate to those things because now we can afford them.  I have done this before and I think all of us have at some point.  The most important piece of the puzzle that we failed to realize is the "cost". 

In Luke 14:28, Jesus is telling the disciples to think something through before going forward with an idea.  He tells them you cannot build a tower if you do not have enough funds.  How would you know this?  Well, it is through proper planning.  With proper planning, different expenses start to flesh out and you can get a good idea what the cost will be.  When I go to the dictionary, it tells me that the word cost can mean, "To cause to lose, suffer, or sacrifice".   In the example of the tower, the cost could be money, time, and any other resources.  All of those are things that you can lose and/or sacrifice.  Given the definition of cost, I want us to think about the cost we incur when we have strong desires for certain items and/or people.  I am going to be transparent here for a minute because I was convicted this weekend, so here we go. 

When I was growing up, I had a few dogs but not all of them lived long.  I mean, what kid does not love having dogs around right?  Well after a while, there were no more dogs.  I always asked but the answer was no, so for many years, I went without a dog, but I always wanted one.   After about my Senior year of high school, my Dad came home with a puppy.  By that time, I got to spend a summer or so with him and then it was off to college.  In this case, I never really "grew up" with a dog around.

Now, fast forward.  I am grown and when I graduate from college and got married, what was one of the first things I purchased?  You got it.  A brand new dog.  Boy, I can say it was a good feeling. I loved having him around and it reminded me of good old times with my childhood dogs.  Then, reality began to hit me.  I started to realize why my parents did not want a dog around.  The are like having another child!  They are hard work to keep up.  They have to get shots, be groomed, walked, etc.  If you have had a sick dog at night and having to run to the Vet you understand that the cost can be quite expensive (monetarily & time wise).  I got what I always wanted, however, I never added up all of the cost.  My dog did not ask me to bring him home, but I chose to do it out of blind excitement and emotions.  Yep, so I had repent after conviction.  Also, I had to eat crow because my wife told me so, but I had to couldn't argue with the sounds of the Holy Spirit.

Everything has a cost associated with it and many times we only see the dollar amount, but fail to recognize other cost factors.  Do you really, really want a house?  Guess what, it not only costs a lot, but it has an enormous amount of responsibility.  If you get into a new home, gone are the days of calling property management to fix something.  Guess who has to pony up for that broken hot water heater or leaky toilet?  You.  If you get a leak in the roof, guess who has to have it repaired?  You.  When the grass needs cutting guess who does it?  You?  To make the lawnmower go, what do you need?  Gas. Guess, what, gas isn't free.  Count the Cost.

You want that brand new top of the line luxury car, right?  I know you just have to have it.  The question is do you fully understand the cost?  Not only does it cost money to bring the car home, but it costs even more to keep the car in good condition.  When something goes wrong, did stop to think that it may cost $500+ for a mechanic to plug up the computer to the car to ONLY diagnose the car (they haven' even started with repairs)? Did you take into account that the luxury car probably required top of the line tires to keep with the luxury experience?  Did you think about the interior that may be difficult to keep clean, because after all it is luxurious?  Count the cost.

I could keep going on and on but you get the point.  We are so emotionally driven by the lack of or the keeping up with the Jone's that we make silly decisions to satisfy a desire or want.  Everything has a cost.  The question is are you willing to pay the entire cost even when you realize it cost more than you really wanted to pay?

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