“Pay me now!”
The snow blanketed the entire parking lot as the temperature dipped to 22F. My wife and I stood there, shivering, as the man held out his hand, awaiting payment.
“Pay me now!” He insisted.
Our recent ski trip to Mammoth was a weekend filled with almost blizzard-like conditions. Attempting to return home on a Sunday morning, we intended to remove our chains for the return drive to Los Angeles. However, the service station that had originally installed the chains emphatically stated that we needed keep the chains on the tires if we wanted to leave Mammoth. Unfortunately, it meant that we had to find a person or service shop, outside of Mammoth, that could remove the chains. The service station thought we might be able to find someone in the next town of Bishop, 42 miles away. Thus we set off and drove the 42 highway miles at 30 mph, our pace limited by our chains and the near white-out conditions.
When we arrived in Bishop, nearly 2 hours later, we quickly found the nearest service station. The service bay was closed so I attempted to ask various store clerks and customers in the shop for help in removing the chains. Their unanimous response was a snicker and sneer, “Remove the chains? Uhhh, can’t you just do it yourself?”
“I don’t know,” I sheepishly smiled. “It seems easy but we have never done this. Have you?”
As if each person were reading from the same script, the answer was, “No, but it seems easy.”
Yes, it seems easy, especially if one has never done it. By the time I walked back to the car, my wife had completed watching an online video on her smartphone, “explaining” how to remove the chains. We proceeded to remove the chains and were encouraged when we were able to remove half of the chains from both front tires. But when we moved the car to allow the complete release of the chains, we discovered the chains were still stuck to the inside part of the wheel. As desperate seconds turned into minutes, we could not figure out how to do it.
Fortunately a man who worked for a roadside assistance company, one which we had a contract, had just arrived in the parking lot. My wife flagged him down and asked for his help.
“Take off your chains? Our company doesn’t put on or take off the chains. You’re on your own, either that or you pay my private company to do it. But you pay me now!”
We, of course, gladly agreed. After an agonizing 10 minutes, lying down in below freezing water and slush, maneuvering himself behind both wheels, he was able to remove both chains. Muttering under his breath about working on his day off, he stuck out his hand.
“Pay me now!”
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Ephesians 2:8-9 (ESV)
Thanks be to God that He does not demand immediate payment when I sin and make a mistake. God is Holy and there is no reason why a Holy God must accept my sinful rebellion against Him. But because of His grace, we are saved through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ. If you have confessed and repented of your sins and placed your faith in Jesus Christ, He is worthy and just to forgive us.
Pay me now? God has paid our debt to Him through Jesus Christ!
Thank you Jesus, for all You have done for me, even though I never deserved it.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.