Sunday, October 17, 2010

Deal or No Deal?

A am not a huge fan of television. I might watch two hours a week, if that. Although the show, Deal or No Deal, has been around for several years, I had never seen and episode until recently. My husband, like most men I suppose, is happiest with the remote control in his hand. He has recently discovered the Game Show Network and has been watching the last half hour of Deal or No Deal after the conclusion of the late evening news.

In case I wasn't the only one who hadn't seen the show I will attempt to summarize.  The show begins with the contestant choosing a case that contains a unknown dollar amount.  The case is chosen from a group of 26 cases (each case held by a beautiful, identically dressed woman), with the monetary amounts inside the cases ranging from a penny to a million dollars. The contestant has opportunities to open more of the 26 cases to try to determine how much money is in the case he or she originally chose. After a few cases have been removed, the contestant is offered a sum of money to stop playing. The amount the "banker" offers each time varies with which amounts are still left on the board to represent the amounts still available in the cases. The contestant has to hedge their bets against what they believe to be in the case. This usually ends up in a nail-biting situation when they try to decide to take what is being offered or continue with what is in their originally chosen case. The worst part is, after they fold and make their deal, they then have to play out the rest of the game to see if they made a good deal or not. Sometimes they come away with more than was in their case and sometimes they don't.

Agonizing decisions are made at every turn, drawn out by the host and commercial breaks to make them even more unbearable. I wonder if each contestant was hooked to a vitals monitor if their blood pressure and stress levels would be off the charts. Frankly, it stresses me out watching it. I don't think I could stand the pressure. Could you?

The contestants on this program are all seeking to change their lives through financial gain. How long they stay in the game is tempered by how desperate for money they are. What if they win and they are still unsatisfied with their lives?? Then what?  

God is the real deal. He has offered to wipe the history of your past mistakes away for you. He has offered you eternal life in heaven. What do you have to do to earn it? Be the best? The smartest? Never make a mistake? Find the cure for cancer? Pick a case and make a nail biting deal? None of those things! The amazing thing is you can't earn it. What happened for you was far more dramatic than anything that happens on Deal or No Deal. 

Jesus Christ, the son of God, fully man and fully God, humbled himself to live on this earth as one of us. He died a horrible, painful, hideous death at the hands of people who were afraid his teachings would change the status quo. In that single, dramatic, dark moment Jesus took the full punishment for all the wrongs you have committed; past, present and future. He did this so that you and I could be found worthy to be called children of God. He died so that we can live. Now this is the deal of a lifetime --  and all you have to do is accept the offer. Your acceptance of God’s gift, your admission that you have made mistakes, your repentance (changing of your mind) of those mistakes, along with your faith in the Lord can bring eternal and abundant life.

Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me (John 14:6). Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)

Lord God, thank you for loving me enough to send your one and only Son to die for me. I know I am a have made mistakes and have sinned in your eyes. I understand that Jesus was crucified and raised to life to pay a debt I was unable to pay, in order that I may live with You forever. I want to turn from my way of life and follow Jesus. I invite Jesus into my heart as the Lord of my life. Help me to find safe places to learn about you and worship you. Please lead me to Godly friends to guide me in my faith. Thank you, Father, for giving me new life in the name of Jesus. Amen!

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