11/23/07

HOW MUCH YOU MATTER

Just wanted to share this awesome devotional written by Ron Hutchcraft that showed up in my e-mail this morning.

How Much You Matter - #5445
Friday, November 23, 2007

I got every baseball card but the one with my hero on it. When I was a kid, I'd go to the vacant lot near our apartment on the south side of Chicago and I'd collect old pop bottles. Then I'd go to the little store on the corner, trade the bottles for money and the money for as many baseball cards as I could afford. My team was the Chicago White Sox. My hero was an All-Star, Hall of Fame-bound second baseman named Nellie Fox. I got every White Sox player except one. I could never find a Nellie Fox card. Fast forward about 25 years. My nine-year-old son is now a determined baseball card collector. He has saved all his allowances for a while to go with me to a special baseball card show. At one of the first tables we visited, my son said, "Dad, look!" And there he was, under glass - Nellie. My Nellie! The card did exist after all. But being all grown up now and needing every dollar, I looked but I didn't buy. My son and I agreed to meet a few minutes later up front. He came with his hand behind his back. I said, "What did you get?" He looked up at me with those huge blue eyes, held out his hand, and handed me that Nellie Fox baseball card. Needless to say, I was a mess.

I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "How Much You Matter."

I could not have felt more loved by my boy. He had literally spent everything he had on me! That's how God feels about you. He loves you very much, and He proved it. He spent everything He had on you. He gave His one and only Son for you. His love is the love you've been looking for your whole life. His love is the only thing that will fill the hole in your heart that has never gone away.


That love is expressed in our word for today from the Word of God in Romans 8, beginning with verse 32. It says: "He ... did not spare His own Son, but gave Him up for us ... neither death nor life, neither angels or demons, neither the present or the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Do you realize what God's offering you? A love that spared nothing for you. A love you can never lose. You can lose the love of a husband or wife, of a boyfriend or girlfriend, of a good friend, of a mom or dad - and maybe you have. But God says "nothing in all creation" can separate you from His love!

He spent it all on you. That's why what you do with Jesus is the most important decision you will ever make. All eternity - your heaven or hell - hinges on whether or not you take what He bought for you with His life. He paid for your sin. He paid the price for you to have eternal life. He's the only One who can give it to you because He's the only One who paid for it.

Imagine my son coming to me with the love gift that he had spent everything on and me saying, "That's nice, son, but I don't care." ... (I)f you've never reached out and received from Jesus what He died to give you, you are ... rejecting the greatest love there is. Forgiveness and heaven and a life that means something - bought with the blood of the Son of God.

Today He holds out to you His gift of eternal life. And you have a clear-cut choice to make. You don't need to outright reject Him to miss what He died to give you. You can just smile politely and do nothing. You're still rejecting what He did. And that could cost you heaven. ... The gift is in His hand. He spent everything He had on you. Don't just walk away. He loves you.

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