More or less?

17 10 2011

Sainsbury’s has a new logo.  No longer are they making life taste better, or encouraging us to try something new today.  They are encouraging us to live well for less. 

I’m sure the marketing department was not trying to issue a challenge to Jesus’ teaching but they have done anyway.

Read again what Jesus has to say in Luke 14:25-35 and specially this sentence – “…any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple.”  That sounds to me like “Live well – for more”.  And Jesus is clear that it is wise to count the cost before embarking on the adventure of following him, not set off on the journey and then wonder if you’ve got the stamina to keep going.


In the early 1900s this advert reputedly appeared inviting men to sign up for an Antarctic Expedition.  Not exactly a “Live well for less” invitation, but they say that over 5000 applied for a place.  (You can engage in the debate about where and when…and indeed if, it appeared.)  There’s something compelling about a high stakes investment…but I’d be cheering from the bench.


Fast forward in Luke to the account of the ruler in Luke 18:18-30.  Here’s a guy who is up for following Jesus, but only if it’s on his terms.  He’s clearly a religious man who has been living well, up to a point.  But now Jesus asks him to “Live well for more” and he can’t hack it.  His morals may be squeaky clean but his heart is turned inwards.  He thinks he has “more” but his perspective is skewed.  He rejects Jesus’ invitation and goes away sad.  I would hate that to be said about me – “She went away sad because following Jesus cost too much.”

And there’s no doubt that it costs.  But there’s something compelling about getting off the bench, getting in the game, and living to the max.  It’s what Jesus promised after all – “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10)  Live well for more, and life will taste better!






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