Last year at the State Fair I saw a vendor selling rocks. These weren’t just any rocks. You could warm them up, put them in a blanket and they would keep you warm. They glowed a gentle red when heated and retained their temperature for a long time. The banner above the rock read:
Experience the Life Changing Warmth
‘Life Changing’ has become a common phrase to describe so many things. That movie was life changing. Our trip changed my life. It seems we’ve taken a fairly extraordinary description and used it so frequently that it can now be used to describe something as mundane as hot rocks. Like ‘awesome’, ‘radical’ or ‘unbelievable’, ‘Life changing’ has become just another exclamation of the marginally beneficial but unusual experience.
It’s unfortunate. Words matter. We lose something when we use our most vibrant, descriptive and extreme words to explain the average. We lose the ability to speak honestly about our experiences. A death in the family is life changing. A major career move from one state to another is life changing. Getting married, having children, landing just the right business deal, discovering you’re adopted, deciding to adopt – these are life changing experiences.
But there is a life changing experience that tops them all. It’s what happens when someone comes to understand they are a sinner in need of savior. It’s that moment when we recognize that Jesus, the one described in the Bible, came to give His life to pay the penalty for our sins and that if we trust Him, He will forgive our sin. What Jesus does for us is actually bigger than forgiveness. First He forgives, then He replaces. He forgives the sin we’ve practiced and then gives us the righteousness that He practiced. That’s life changing.
The world has rules. You do something wrong, you pay for it. It’s every man for himself. But with Jesus in your life you don’t have to live by the world’s rules anymore. You’re free from that law that says you get what you deserve. Instead you get what Jesus gives – righteousness, peace, joy and the Holy Spirit – and that’s only the beginning.
Forgiveness is a gift. Discovering the implications of that gift is a process. Every day with Jesus is a day to learn something new about the incredible grace of God and the remarkable life He has for those who trust in Him.
Easter is on the way. The stone that covered His tomb is so much more than a hot rock. It is the doorway that uncovers a truly life changing experience.
What’s your relationship to Jesus?
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. Against such there is no law.” – Galatians 5:22-23
I have an idea for something to sell at the State Fair – A Bacon Wrapped Tootsie Roll Deep Fried on a Stick. I have no doubt it would sell. It may not rise to the level of life changing hot rocks, but I’m certain many would find themselves moved by the experience. 🙂