The burgundy shorts didn’t fit my style or my waist. What was I thinking wearing burgundy shorts anyway? Was I trying to look like I had been dipped in strawberry preserves? I located the receipt and returned them for a refund. Receipts are a godsend.
Those proof-of-purchase paper slips have been around for approximately 5,000 years. But they’re not just for proving a sale; they are also a security document, assuring that if you don’t like a product, you can always return it. No sale is final—you can return anything for a full refund if you keep the receipt. You can effectively undo a monetary transaction and relinquish ownership of something you previously purchased.
You may do this with a defective toaster, a faulty iPhone, or a pair of unsightly shorts; but God won’t do it with you. God doesn’t keep a receipt for your soul. He isn’t going to return you for a refund because you are broken, flawed, and inadequate. He will not renounce ownership of your soul. He will keep you forever—not because you are great, but because the price paid for you was great. As Peter rightly stated, “For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And it was not paid with mere gold or silver, which lose their value. It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God” (1 Peter 1:18-19, NLT).
God owns you if you know Christ as your Lord and Savior. “You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19b-20). You are His possession: “[He] gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14). And His purchase of your salvation on Calvary was final: “He [Jesus] entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption” (Hebrews 9:12).
Bible Gleanings is a weekend devotional column, written for the Murray Ledger & Times in Calloway County, Kentucky. In the event that the column is not posted online, it is be posted for reading here.
Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their three dogs, Susie (Jack Russell), Aries (English Shepherd), and Dot (Beagle).
Once again, as I was reading Charles Spurgeon’s classic devotional, Morning and Evening, I stumbled upon a theological gold mine that I’d like to share with you:
“The Lord will perfect that which concerneth me.” (Psalm 138:8)
“Most manifestly the confidence which the Psalmist here expressed was a divine confidence. He did not say, “I have grace enough to perfect that which concerneth me—my faith is so steady that it will not stagger—my love is so warm that it will never grow cold—my resolution is so firm that nothing can move it; no, his dependence was on the Lord alone. If we indulge in any confidence which is not grounded on the Rock of ages, our confidence is worse than a dream, it will fall upon us, and cover us with its ruins, to our sorrow and confusion. All that Nature spins time will unravel, to the eternal confusion of all who are clothed therein. The Psalmist was wise, he rested upon nothing short of the Lord’s work. It is the Lord who has begun the good work within us; it is He who has carried it on; and if he does not finish it, it never will be complete. If there be one stitch in the celestial garment of our righteousness which we are to insert ourselves, then we are lost; but this is our confidence, the Lord who began will perfect. He has done it all, must do it all, and will do it all. Our confidence must not be in what we have done, nor in what we have resolved to do, but entirely in what the Lord will do. Unbelief insinuates—”You will never be able to stand. Look at the evil of your heart, you can never conquer sin; remember the sinful pleasures and temptations of the world that beset you, you will be certainly allured by them and led astray.” Ah! yes, we should indeed perish if left to our own strength. If we had alone to navigate our frail vessels over so rough a sea, we might well give up the voyage in despair; but, thanks be to God, He will perfect that which concerneth us, and bring us to the desired haven. We can never be too confident when we confide in Him alone, and never too much concerned to have such a trust.” ¹
I’ve really struggled with giving God my best in my personal life and ministry here lately. I’ve prayed, “Lord, today I’m going to get back with the program,” or “God, I just need to get back to the way things used to be.” Now while I may have good intentions, I was missing the main point the whole time. I am weak, and I always will be. God is strong and He always will be. He just calls me to be confident in Him that He will work through me and give me the strength I need to be fully obedient to Him. God will “perfect that which concerneth me.”
1. Spurgeon, Charles H. Morning and Evening (Scotland, UK: Christian Focus Publications, 1994), 304.