I once was invited to scout a house down south. The idea of owning your house in this rent-an-apartment kind of world is really a comforting thought. Added to the fact that I was highly encouraged by my parents, my siblings were already planning to get one. So I eagerly awaited the van that would bring us to the model units.
There were at least 4 to 5 units lined up. I entered the first one and was full of awe. The house is fully furnished. It was a nice 2 bedroom 2 storey house. It was nice. The next one was even better. The design was even grander. There was a room for a library and the staircase was really classy. As we went through each of the 5 houses, I was in awe. The next one was better than the last I checked. Then, I asked the biggest question: would it look like this when I buy this house?
Of course, no one buys a brand new fully furnished house. It turns out that behind each furnished model was a similar house that was dull and gray. It had nothing inside it even a toilet or sink. The staircase was scary and very rough. In fact all the walls and floors were rough. I was told that upon purchase, this was the house that you will receive. What was presented to me before was the potential the houses could have. The dull and grey house could be a wonderful luxurious and comfortable home. I was also told that the house would have to cost more than the usual for it to become similar or even close to what they have portrayed.
Of course it was a clear marketing scheme. The world dictates that for anything of beauty, luxury or comfort that we could have, there is a certain price. Most often the price is always high. Fancy restaurants would most naturally cost more because you are treated there like kings and queens as compared to your favorite local fast food joint where anything happens. A five star hotel would definitely cost more than your usual travelers’ inn or capsule bunk. A cabin on a cruise ship would definitely cost more than your regular roll-on ferry boat. The price is always higher.
Does this mean that for a person to have a good and happy life, we ought to have more money and buying power? Consider the people who are living the luxurious life, are they happy with their lives? Are they truly satisfied? Or are they cowering in fear of losing their riches, or sad and depressed for failed relationships and broken trust?
Most people live in fully furnished houses but are living dull and grey lives. Truth be told, the real price of living a happy life is indeed high. For a person to be totally happy and satisfied, the person must take it upon himself to follow the guidelines to be happy. These guidelines are immortal and important. However, our sinful natures prevent us from doing so. Our sin has permeated the very fabric of our existence that no ritual or tradition would automatically cleanse our sins. The price is indeed so high that we need to die in order to pay off our offenses. So we are basically good as doomed.
“When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation. For since our friendship with God was restored by the death of his Son while we were still his enemies, we will certainly be saved through the life of his Son. So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God.” – Romans 5:6-11
Jesus Christ, the son of God, the word that was made flesh, came down to earth at just the right moment to save us from sin. He came down on earth out of love and compassion towards us even though we were sinners in His sight. His death restored our relationship with God. His death allows us to take His perfection and sinless life as ours and live a happy life. Out of His sacrifice, we could show our love to Him as redeemed individuals doing the things that He did in this world.
Now the house is fully furnished and luxurious for the price of nothing. He has paid the price for a life of love and sinlessness. He has paid the price so we can forget about our sinful natures and allow Him to transform us and lead us. The price is indeed high, but He paid it in blood so we can receive it for free. That is how much He loves us.
“ No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” – John 3:13-17
Jesus sacrifice on the cross was done so we could be free from sin. This freedom from sin allows us to be transformed in God’s love so we could live good and happy lives following in Christ’s footsteps. A happy life is there. A happy life is free. The price is high, but it is paid in full.