Well, it happened again! About once a week some company calls our home and offers us a lower interest rate on our credit card debt. It just seems to me, with today's technology, these companies could easily discover we don't pay interest on credit card debt and save the expense of making such calls. Then they could reduce their rates a little for everyone.
Our bank is currently advertising money market savings plans that pay a whopping 1.01 percent interest and a checking account paying .8 percent. They have a lot of "guts" advertising such rates while, at the same time, they advertise mortgages at 4.25 percent. They charge at least four times as much for me to use their money as they give me for using my money! Does it seem fair?
The interest rate on our home mortgage is high. I think we may soon look into refinancing at a lower rate.
We all deal with these issues daily. We try to pay the lowest interest we can and receive the highest rate. But let me ask you another question about interest: How do you rate your interest in the Lord and His work?
There are those who have little interest in the Lord. Their commitment to Him is minimal. Maybe they attend services of the church only on special occasions. They go to the Lord in prayer only when they are in deep need, and sometimes God blesses them. They have no idea what blessings they miss.
Others appear to be more interested. They show up regularly in worship services. They may or may not contribute to the offerings. This group covers a wide range of believers. Their religion affects their lifestyle only a little. They serve the Lord when it's convenient, but in times of temptation they easily yield.
We can be thankful for the "100 percent Christians," who are, in the words of Jesus, "the salt of the earth" and "light of the world." Their interest in the Lord and His work is obvious, constant and intense. They worship regularly, read and heed the Word, witness to others and live unselfishly. They sacrifice time, energy and money for others' sake. They are both blessed and a blessing.
The New Testament challenges us with this kind of commitment. Hebrews 10:22-24 reads: "Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith... Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds." (New International Version)
James the apostle records a great promise: "Come near to God and he will come near to you." (James 4:8) And again: "Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up." (James 4:10)
These are glorious promises pretty much limited to "high-interest Christians."
My interest rate is constantly climbing - is yours?
Finding Faith is written by area pastors. This week's column comes from Pastor Chuck Salmon, associate minister of Howard Christian Church.