Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. (Hebrews 4:1)
Last weekend, Memorial Day weekend, my family took my mother, her money and her coupons to Logan’s Roadhouse for dinner. The coupons were marvelous, offering two entrees for the price of one. Rarely have I seen five people rack up such a small bill at a reasonably nice restaurant.
The problem with those coupons, however, lay in their useful dates. They could be used only on Saturday through Monday of the holiday weekend. Come Tuesday morning, and they possessed no value whatsoever. The expiring coupon is a tool used by businesses to incite us into buying what they want when they want.
The promises of God, unlike the coupons of Logan’s Roadhouse, do not expire. My mother thought it would be a shame to “waste” those coupons. Of course, they wouldn’t really be wasted. Had I never seen them, I wouldn’t have finished the weekend thinking it incomplete for lack of a Logan’s steak. But God’s promises would be a shame to waste. His promises enrich us far more surely than does a two-for-one dinner offer.
The Christian enters God’s rest through obedience. When we do not obey, we do not have rest. Instead, like diners wandering about town with soon-to-expire coupons, we find ourselves ill at ease, unable to focus. But obeying, we can relax, rest.
With the undated promise, I can enter that rest today or ten years from now. The choice is mine, but it’s rather like opting to pay full price when the discount is readily available. “Yes, I can cut $10 off my cable bill, but I think I’ll wait a few months to do that.” What a shame that believers behave in such a way.