About 4 or 5 years ago there was a jewelry store in a mall...we’ll OK, it was more of a jewelry kiosk in a mall. They would fix broken jewelry and sold new jewelry. Along with selling new jewelry comes the whole customer satisfaction aspect (exchanges, etc.).
Frequenting this kiosk and others like it in the mall was a middle aged woman. She had terrible taste in jewelry...everything she bought was very exaggerated and over-the-top—thus very expensive as well: even for a jewelry kiosk at a mall. And she absolutely loved returning things she had purchased.
One day she came to the kiosk and threw a bracelet on the counter without so much as a word. The saleslady knew this was going to be a “pleasant” encounter, but put on a smile and the following conversation took place:
Saleslady: Hi, how are you? How can I help you today?
Customer: Hi, I’d like to return this bracelet.
Saleslady: OK, do you have a receipt?
Customer: You can look it up on your computer. It’s under the name Jane Smith (changed to protect the guilty).
The saleslady finds the purchase and notices several “red flags.” First, it was purchased two months earlier. Second, she had replaced another item in order to buy the bracelet. And, third, the bracelet was clearly worn and used...not damaged, but certainly used.
Obviously the right to replace an item is a one-time thing and, obviously, you can’t replace an item you bought two months ago and used. When informed that she would be unable to exchange it or give a refund, the customer becomes belligerent and argues non-stop for 10 minutes. She is adamant on replacing it and threatens legal action if he demands are not met.
The saleslady is starting to run out of patience and a crowd of onlookers has gathered. So in a professional, but firm, voice she says, “Ma’am, would you have liked to pay for an item that had been used by someone else and wasn't new?”
The customer says, “No, but…”
The saleslady continues, “And would you like to purchase from a store that was full of items that people kept buying and returning and were not new?”
Again, “No, but…”
“And do you understand that collections change, and we cannot accept jewelries that were purchased and used for two months?”
Again, “Yes, but…”
“But what?” the saleslady asked, her patience about out.
And the customer, genuinely frustrated, says, “But I don’t feel like wearing this bracelet anymore!”
At this point someone in the crowd shouted, “Then you shouldn’t buy jewelry you don’t like, idiot!”
Sometimes, we treat our Christianity like that woman treated that bracelet...we just don’t “feel” like wearing it anymore - at least not today. So, maybe, we don’t exactly try to exchange it, but we do try to keep it out of sight until the next time we “feel” like wearing it.
Choosing to become a Christian is a major decision. It is a decision that affects every other decision we make in our life.
In Luke 9, Jesus is talking to three people who expressed a desire to follow Him. They each, though, had an excuse as to why they couldn’t (or wouldn’t) follow Him right then.
To the last one, who wanted to wait until he said good-by to his family, Jesus said, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62, ESV)
If you’re going to follow Jesus, you have to be all-in. If you’re going to follow Jesus, you can’t just follow Him when you “feel” like following.
If you have truly “put on Christ” (Galatians 3:27), then you will never “feel” like taking Him off...let alone exchanging Him for something else!