I started writing this blog a few weeks ago when this topic was a hot one but the thoughts are just as critical and important for us to think about today.
“Signing Up” is the easy part. The living out of the experience that you have bought into will determine the worth of the commitment.
Recently I read an article in the New York Times that told of the mass confusion that is going on in Crimea. Since Russia signed up and annexed Crimea a few weeks ago, the people of Crimea joined Russia with great enthusiasm and anticipation. They are now discovering how difﬁcult the process is. Thousands of people are standing in line for days trying to ﬁgure out what they have done. There are shortages and a lack of leadership to facilitate the change.
Signing up for Obama Care has been a difﬁcult experience for those who have spent long hours getting into the system. Broadcast news and updates have ﬁlled the public airways with reports of failure and frustration. The President has arbitrarily made decisions related to the law many times to try to get it all to work. Multimillions of dollars were spent selling people on the beneﬁt of getting into this government run system. It has often seemed like the President and his people are trying to drive a square peg into a round hole.
Recently the President proclaimed victory and success that his plan is working. It sort of reminded me of the event former President George Bush had on the ship with the sign “Mission Accomplished” waving behind his head. We know what happened there. Mockery resulted because the mission really had just begun.
So, too, the new healthcare process has just begun. The real results are ahead of us and no one is clear as to whether it will work or not. We do know that this is going to change America forever in ways we have not even begun to realize. When Nancy Pelosi said that “you need to pass this bill in order to understand it,” she led the people into an unknown abyss that will cause us a sea of change in the years ahead. There are those who will beneﬁt, but there will be others who will ﬁnd themselves weighed in the balance of government jurisdiction, losing more than they gain. Many of those are people who never desired this change in the ﬁrst place.
In my lifetime I have had to face the realities of life at every level of need. I have looked beyond the proverbial fence and seen many things that I desired and wanted, but they were beyond my capacity to either earn or merit them. The main reason for not having something is not being able to afford it. Not only do we need the capacity to buy but the capacity to keep. Maintaining the results of our signing up are as critical as signing up in the ﬁrst place. Signing up is only the ﬁrst step in a journey of unknowns. Everyone should hope for a good outcome, but I don’t think it is a bad thing to question the unknowns and test the perimeters of the promises made. If we don’t have a good outcome, it will affect us all.
While all of us desire the best for everyone, there is no law that can legislate equality of substance into existence. Legislation that requires people to do what they won’t naturally be motivated to do only creates a climate for a black market to circumvent the system. The only freedom guaranteed under the constitution is the freedom of opportunity to use your circumstances to the best of your ability.
The reality is that decision making in life is like a tide that impacts the lift of all the boats in the water. None of us will be rewarded for hiding our talent in the sand. Sign up, step out on your conviction, but make sure your conviction is rooted in the logic of truth and good stewardship and not in the illusion of entitlement and consensus.
The Bible gives us many illustrations that act as guiding principles related to all of this. One of the key ones is found in Luke 14:28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not ﬁrst sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? For if he lays the foundation and is not able to ﬁnish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, saying, This fellow began to build and was not able to ﬁnish.“
If we are going to ﬁnish strong, then we must determine wisely what we sign up for in life. Every time you create something you must feed it. Whether you are parenting a child or a new idea, learn to count the cost and then weigh it in the light of your capacity to deliver the results at the end of the journey.
When you sign up with God’s plan through faith in Jesus Christ, there is a cross you bear when you commit your life to Him. But in Christ there is a divine power to share that takes you through the valleys of death and testing into the sufﬁciency of God’s love.
All this leads you to living according to God’s will and purpose. Don’t miss the divine blessing that can be yours but is often clouded by the self interest of the ﬁnite world in which we live.