The other day my wife and I did a first. We went to IKEA. Yes, as amazing as it may sound, that was the first time we have ever gone to IKEA. It was a very interesting visit.
First of all, it is an amazingly huge store. And the way it is laid out causes you to almost feel like you are trapped in a never ending flow of displays and products. After we were there for over an hour, we decided we wanted to leave, but realized that if we continued on the “pre-planned” route, we might never get out.
I began to think that we could make a “B” rated suspense movie entitled, “Trapped in IKEA.” You could go on and on and on without ever reaching the exit. How scary would that be?
In addition to realizing how massive of a store it is, I also began to understand the appeal of IKEA for such a large segment of today’s society. Although many of the items in the store are attractive and somewhat functional, many of the items are not very well made, and it wouldn’t take much to ruin or break them. Thus much of their wares are “disposable.”
How does that connect to many in our society today? Many people in our society today have been raised, or possibly programmed, to feel comfortable with that which is disposable. You have disposable batteries, disposable furniture; you have disposable microwave ovens, and of course our cell phones are almost all designed to be disposable over a short period of time.
This predisposition to things being disposable prepares young people very well for a number of issues, like the idea of abortion — in other words, disposable lives. Young people become convinced that the pre-born are not yet a person, and therefore you can dispose of “it” if “it” would be an inconvenience. That means you can dispose of it and just have another down the road when you are ready, or more “able.”
Not only are people increasingly seen as disposable today, but so is history. Many of our younger citizens are taught that if you don’t like some aspect of our history, just dispose of it. By that thinking you can redact history so that our past seems more pleasant than if you kept our past intact.
The problem that has begun to surface through efforts to “rehistorize” our past (yes, that is a relatively new word) is that there is a current effort to not only change aspects of our history that some people want erased, but the “rewrite police” are now beginning to rewrite phrases in classic literature that they don’t like, even in classics written for children.
Why do I focus on this issue of what is disposable? Let’s push this logic to the wall. The more comfortable we become with virtually everything being disposable, you will find less resistance in our society toward those who are making up the lists of what is disposable of adding you and me and others to that list.
Certainly YOU might object, but you and I won’t have a say. If you are deemed disposable by those who are in that position, and when society comes to the place where they won’t push back on such decisions, then as a good citizen you will have no choice but to step into the socially accepted “disposable chamber.” Somewhat scary.
But wait; even if society continues down that road, you need to know that there is someone, a very important someone, who thinks, actually He knows, that you are not disposable. In fact, you are so important to Him that He has provided a way for you to be in a personal interactive relationship with Him, not only now, but for all eternity.
Yes, I’m speaking about God. God didn’t just create you; He created you for a very important purpose — to be in a relationship with Him. As far as God is concerned, you are not disposable; not at all. You are very precious to God, and He loves you greatly.
Because He loves you, He provided a way for you to enter into a permanent relationship with Him. He did that by sending His Son — God the Son — to live as one of us, doing all the works of righteousness the Father required of Him, so that He could become that perfect substitute for you, and not just you but me, and for anyone in the world who is willing to trust Him, and put their faith in Him alone as the Savior of the world, as your Savior.
Two well known verses in the Bible makes that clear. John 3:16 — “God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” That reveals a lot of love.
And that love desires you to be in a relationship with God so much that Jesus did everything necessary for you to be able to receive that forgiveness and the gift of eternal life so that if you will believe in Jesus, and call out to Him for salvation, He will say “Yes!”
Romans 10:13 – “WHOEVER will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
If you look around you, not only in this country, but in pretty much all the nations of the world, you will see that increasingly people are disposable. Either they are not the right political or ideological flavor, or they are not helpful to this or that group’s agenda. Maybe you don’t look the right way, or you don’t speak the right language.
Sadly, there are so many groups or individuals who will drop you as a “friend” if you don’t sign on to what they are offering. Again, to them you are disposable, but not to God!
As God says in Romans 8:32, “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give US all things?”
Think about that. God so loves you that He sent His only Son to suffer for sin in your place, and then to taste death for you so that He could provide the way of forgiveness and eternal life. If God was willing to do that, why would you doubt His offer to give you eternal life if you but put your faith in Jesus Christ alone as your Savior and Lord?
You are not disposable. God offers you a choice. Choose life; choose Christ.
Jon McCartney is pastor of First Baptist Church of Tooele