day 931: The Cost of Cheap

“But King David replied to Araunah, ‘No, I insist on buying it for the full price. I will not take what is yours and give it to the LORD. I will not present burnt offerings that have cost me nothing!”

I loved this sketch and article by Carl Richards in the New York Times.  See:

Mr. Richards’ thesis was that waiting until we can afford to buy good things that will last, or that we will use for a long time, is a better economic decision. The old adage, “We’re too poor to buy cheap things” was quoted and it reminded me of the many times in my own life when I have forgotten the power of delayed gratification and I purchase out of impulse because of the catalyst of a sale or seeming bargain only to be disappointed later that I didn’t wait or save up for what was the better purchase.  Of course some businesses are built on the principle of cheap, available and disposable, but I’d prefer to think that after time the “Old Navy’s” of the world become something else.  We have a store not far from our Rhode Island home called “Benny’s”.  Our best friend’s twin girls over the years (they are 16 now) have come to call the store, “Broken Benny’s” because whatever you buy there seems to break or wear out within a few week or months of purchase.  And when you add up the dollars spent, you find that you ended up overspending versus buying quality the first time. As I once told a professional services vendor, “Look, I’m an American consumer, and that means I want it now, I want it perfect, and I want it free…or at least cheap”.  What Mr. Richards points out so well is that we can’t have our “cheap” cake and eat it too.

King David describes that not all things in life should come free and in fact, we should always pay a fair price for those things that we purchase. We have become so accustomed to wanting everything for free or below what we want to pay.  We are reminded over and over in God’s Word that we are to be fair to others and that we all pay a price for the lives that we live.  We have to look no further than the price that was paid for our salvation to understand and model that if we aren’t willing to pay our own price to commit, follow and share our belief in Jesus that we are missing out on what He paid for us.  When it comes to our role as believers in the workplace and our striving to bring glory to Him in all that we do, let’s never try and take the cheap way out but instead pay forward the price that was paid for us!

Reference: 1 Chronicles 21:24 (New Living Testament)

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