“Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’”
(Luke 14:28-30, NIV)
We were on a mission to find and purchase two computers today. A laptop for my daughter, and one for me. I enlisted the help of my son who immediately posed the question, “Mom, what is your budget?”
At first I was impressed at the wisdom of my eighteen year old son, but then his question got me thinking. What if I had gone into the store to purchase the computers, chose the two I wanted, made it all the way to the counter, and had the cashier ring me up only to find out that my card was declined? What if after spending the two hours in the store to select the brand we thought best would suit our needs, it turned out that the cost of the computers were prohibitive? After a few moments of silent thought it became obvious that counting the cost of and planning my purchases were indeed an imperative part of the decision-making process.
In much the same way, counting the costs of our daily decision-making play a huge role in other aspects of our lives. Whether it be through budgeting our time, budgeting our finances, or budgeting our talents, counting the cost is vital in everything we do. For example, investors count the cost of their return on investments. Bankers count the cost of the interest they stand to gain or lose on a loan. We do this because we are always in search of the outcome that will serve us best in our physical, chronological, and financial lives. Yet, whenever it comes to the spiritual aspect many fail to count the cost of the day by day decisions they make seldom thinking of the fallout said decisions will leave behind.
This lack of spiritual planning can oft be found in human sexuality. Many thrust themselves into casual sexual relationships without weighing the consequences. Many put the ‘cart’ of sexual intimacy before ‘horse’ of marriage and expect a great outcome. Many often end up either hurt, betrayed, or in a vicious cycle of guilt and shame. While those who still manage to get married, even after premarital sex, often find themselves victims to unsated jealousy as well as the need to control the other person.
If we were to stop for a moment, however, and meditate on the word of God we would see that on this He is clear, “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral” (Hebrews 13:4, NIV). Now, “If marriage should be honored above all, and the marriage bed kept pure,” does that not mean that anything outside of those boundaries are not aligned with God’s design? Does that not mean that although the world might be shouting from the rooftops that nothing could be further from the truth, does not the word of God warrant some thought?
Beloved, what is your budget? How much time are you willing to invest in an effort to continue living outside God’s protective boundaries? What do you think will be your return on investment? I leave you with this: The next time you find yourself thinking about participating in premarital sex, ask yourself and truly reflect on the following questions:
- What part of my future will I forfeit if I commit to executing today’s decision?
- What do I stand to gain by going through with it? Do I stand to gain that which is temporal, or that which is eternal (good or bad)?
- By committing to this act, what transactions am I making in the spiritual realm?
- What spiritual alliances will I form?
- What consequences will I have set in motion not only for myself, but for my direct descendants?
Know that I love you, all.
So that none should perish,
Danielle, The Girl in the Red Shoes