Remember when Walmart was first trying to take over the retail world, they would allow you to return anything no questions asked? Well, I have tried more than once to return things I’ve purchased or that were gifted to me, and it turns out their policy has changed over the years.
A few years back, my Christmas list was full of books! Well, it actually is every year, but that particular year my sweet husband surprised me with a Kindle. Immediately, I purchased several books from my list to try it out. Later that Christmas Day, we celebrated with the extended family. My dear aunt had gifted me the hardback version of the same books! I told her what I had done, and she said she bought them at Walmart and I could return them. I told her I would get a gift card to purchase more books for my Kindle. I was so excited about my new toy!
Until I got to Walmart that was…apparently they don’t want to return books because you might have read them. This was the day after Christmas, I don’t read that fast! I explained to the lady what had happened. I hadn’t even cracked open the books. They were in perfect condition. She said it was store policy. I asked for the manager. While I waited for the manager, I read the store policy on the sign behind the counter. It didn’t say a thing about books. When the manager arrived, I explained again what had happened. When she started to spout off about store policy, I pointed to the sign. I ended up getting store credit, but I had to work for it.
Recently, I found myself again at that counter with a gift that I was trying to return. It was a small appliance I just couldn’t figure out. The clerk started the return and then said, “Oh, I’m sorry, you can't return this because it cost too much.” Apparently, their “policy” had changed again! The lady told me they couldn’t return it, because it was over $50. I guess, I wasn’t up for the fight that day. I just took my item and left.
Before anyone starts commenting about how Walmart does this because of all the theft, let me just say I have a close friend that works asset protection and I am very aware of the theft that goes on daily. I still don’t believe that an honest customer should be penalized for the crime of a dishonest thief. Maybe, Walmart should get those cards like some of the grocery stores have that track all the money we spend in their stores. Then they might be nicer to the honest customers.
Where does Jesus fit into all of this? First of all, His policy never changes! He is the same today as he was 2000 years ago. His promises are the same and true for me, just as they were for the woman at the well as told in the bible. The BEST part is that He will exchange anything! Nothing is too expensive or too used! He died on the cross to exchange His life for our sin! He gladly took back my disobedience, my potty mouth, my suicidal thoughts, my selfishness, my bitterness, my divorce, my gossip…oh, the list is too long! The point is, it doesn’t matter what we’ve done. He loves us enough to take us back! To give us the full refund no questions asked.
If you haven’t fully grasped why Jesus crawled on that cross, if you haven’t taken all your returns, your sins, to Him, make this your time! If you haven’t and want to know anything about His return policy, I’d be happy to help you. We don’t have to carry around all the returns that pile up and clutter our hearts. We can let it all go, and trust in the One who has already paid for mistakes. Our sin causes separation between us and God. Jesus stands in that gap for us. Just like Walmart is the middle man between us and the manufacture of those goods. Jesus chose to be our middle man. He chose to stand in the gap for us–to take the returns upon himself and fully redeem our lives.
Remember at Walmart, how I had to work for my return with the books? The Good News about Jesus is that we don’t have to work for our return. Scripture tells us in Romans 10:9, “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Asking Jesus to come into your life is an amazing gift. Works come in when you fully understand all that He has done for you, and you can’t help but want to honor him with your life.
The truth is NONE of us will ever be good enough for a full exchange. The Good News is we don’t have to be! It’s not based on our works, or how good we are. It is based on His policy of loving us enough to die on our behalf redeeming us fully with God the Father.
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