Selling surplus plants on a local website was a smart idea. After all, there are always a few new plants that I feel I simply must have, and selling my extras not only makes money, but makes room for the newcomers, too.
Some friends got me started on this idea after seeing me bring armloads of plants to the garden clubs and church meetings over the years.
I truly started feeling like those dreaded zucchini ladies who foist their giant cucurbits on unsuspectingly polite friends.
“People would pay top dollar for your plants, Christine!” said one lady. “You can’t give them to just anyone and have them treasured like you would treasure them.” They were right. It seemed the more I had to encourage people to take my free gift, the more likely the plants would die.
They finally convinced me to offer my plants for a small price, at least enough to cover the cost of the dirt!
I reluctantly listed some of my most common flowers; irises, lilies, and mint. The response was tremendous! Wanting to be fair, I sold my wares at about half the price of the nursery centers, and always gave a little extra.
Then the money started coming in, and also the positive reviews! We made a big dent in the money needed for an upcoming mission trip for two family members, and we enjoyed sending our plants to new, happy homes.
What a contrast to the tales of woe told to me by the hesitant people with whom I enthusiastically shared my plants.
This is the second season doing this, after some people made inquiries on several listings that were not even active. I am learning a valuable lesson on how we place value, and on what.
It is a sad but true commentary on human nature that unless there is a cost associated with something, we don’t always accurately judge its worth.
This can be a huge problem when we consider God’s free gift of salvation.
Humankind has undervalued the incredible treasure that the Father bestows on us. Because we don’t do anything to deserve it — in fact we are incapable of doing anything to deserve it — we don’t fully value this incredible gift.
Our ambivalence shows sometimes.
We follow God’s commands — when they don’t get in our way. We go to church — unless we have company, or something good is on TV. We give of our means to support the church and to spread the gospel — but not at the expense of the things we want and feel we deserve.
The problem here is that we have not really considered the cost of our salvation.
“For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:20, NASB). The price was the blood of the sinless Son of God, but what we are asked to do for God is microscopic in comparison.
Here is the big mistake we make, we see no price that we have paid, because there is none. Anything we give to God, even if it is sacrificial, is like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6).
There was a cost for the redemption of our souls, although we paid none of it. The price was enormous; beyond the means of all of humanity. Only the sinless Lamb of God would be worthy enough to pay for the sins of all.
And praises be to that Lamb that he was willing to pay it! Let us never undervalue our own salvation again. We were bought with a price.