For some reason there's this slight fear every time I go to buy something that my card will be declined or we'll get overdrawn (I suppose better money management skills on my part would alleviate some of those fears). When you really want or need something, the worst thing that could happen is to see the error message that your payment didn't go through.
My husband and I have been ordering our fair share of stuff online recently. It's just that time of the year, I guess. And every time I see that lovely message, "Payment accepted", I breathe a little sigh of relief. Then I went to order a small upgrade to my cloud storage on my phone. We're talking a very small amount of money. I hit the button to pay and got the dreaded error message, much to my shock, of course. Come to find out I had my old card number still entered. I was upstairs, the wallet wasn't, and needless to say I still don't have the upgraded storage. Laziness will get you like that.
What's the point? Jesus (obviously).
But seriously, all these payment accepted messages and shortness of breath made me think about the vital importance of that short message to our Christian lives.
We sin every day (understatement). Our sin ruined our once-perfect relationship with God. Our sin gave us a death sentence that would last for all of eternity. The solution to our sin problem required a perfect solution. One perfect person, who never sinned, to die in the place of sinful humanity and suffer the hell of separation from God - in short, the solution was payment for our sin.
Enter sinless Son of God, Jesus.
Since He never sinned, at all, not even once, Jesus was the perfect solution to our deadly problem. And when He was beaten, spat on, mocked and held up on a cross with a nail in each hand and one in His feet, He took it all. Somehow God allowed Jesus to take our sin on Himself, and when He died hanging on that cross God looked at Him and said, "Payment accepted". No error message. No overdrafts. No refreshing the page. One payment, one time, for the whole of humanity for all time. Our problem was fixed. Our sin paid for in full. Our relationship with God restored. Our eternal future secured.
Payment accepted. What a reassuring message - online and in our faith. Who do you know who needs to hear those freeing words spoken into their life today?