How much did you pay?

You won’t believe what I paid.

Did you get a good deal? It’s the first thing you hear after you tell someone that we bought something significant. They want to know the price you paid. Was it valuable/significant? Everyone loves a good deal and some people excel in this shopping excellence. (I probably have the exact opposite of this gift.) It definitely isn’t a skill that I possess.

Can I share with you about how I learned about paying a price? This was my beginning story where I learned that sometimes you’re not ready or able to pay the price.

$21.23 was the total for my toy purchase. Twenty one-dollars and twenty-three cents is what the cashier said my total was.

How do you pay $21.23 when all you have is $20.10?

I was a 14-year-old boy that had no clue what sales tax was and how it increased the price. I saw the price tag of $19.95 and I had a twenty-dollar bill. As far as in my mind, I was clear. I wanted my item. How would I pay the price?
That day, I learned that just because you see a price tag amount doesn’t mean that amount is the final cost.

Is sacrifice a bad word?

Say the word “sacrifice” out loud around someone and see what occurs. I’m serious. Test it out.

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The moment you say it, there is this idea connected to the word that means total misery. Like you have just inherited a dangerous disease and people must feel sorry for you.

Sacrifice isn’t a bad word. In fact, it is a great word. A word that should be used more today than ever.

The word sacrifice comes from the Latin word ‘sacra,’ which means sacred, and ‘fice,’ which means to perform. To sacrifice is to perform the sacred.

Another interesting word is passion. This word first surfaced in the twelfth century. Coined by Christian scholars, it means to suffer. But it’s not the typical suffering that comes to your mind as in physical pain. In its purest sense, it describes the willingness to suffer of Jesus Christ. But this passion doesn’t mean just suffering for suffering’s sake; it must be genuine and willing suffering. It’s one thing to suffer as a victim, but it’s a different thing to suffer for a cause to become the victor. Both words “passion” and “path” have similar roots: the word “path” is a suffix that means suffering from. Certain doctors are called pathologists. These doctors study the illnesses and diseases that humans suffer. There’s a link between suffering, passion, and sacrifice. At its essence, ‘passion’ isn’t a heightened romantic emotion, but it is a willingness to perform sacred suffering. The real meaning of passion is to suffer for what you love. When we discover what we will pay the price for, we discover our life’s mission and purpose. Passion stretches you. Performing the sacred will extend you. Your willingness to suffer will lead you to a gift. This gift will lead you to the great fulfillment of living for this purpose.

What price did I pay?

I stared at the cashier at her request for the $21.23 total. I didn’t know what to do. I waited there for what felt seemed like an eternity with us staring at each other. After maybe a minute or two, the cashier said, “you don’t have it, do you”? I couldn’t even utter the words to say no. I just nodded my head. She said, “wait right there”. What happened next I could not have predicted.

She reached into her jacket pocket and found some loose change. She then called other cashiers to ask if they had any loose change. Between all the cashiers they came up with my outstanding amount.

When I returned to the house that day with my toy, it was different. I was different. Every time I played with that toy it was telling me a story. I felt awkward when I played with it. The toy seemed to say, “You didn’t have what it took to buy me. So I’m not your toy. But someone else paid the price for the toy so you could take it home.” The toy never felt like I owned it but only on loan to me.

Are you willing to pay a price?

We achieve all worthwhile contributions through passion if one will pay the price. On our gravestone are two dates: the day we were born and the day we die. But what symbolizes our life is the dash in between. We don’t discover the depths of our passions at our starting lines, we learn it as we walk out the paths of our life. Our beginning is hoe we learn about paying a price. The rest of our life is where we get to pay this price.

You are already paying a price now. It is worth your this sacred suffering? Or are you paying for something you can’t afford?

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