Some Assembly Required
Have you ever realized how much can be communicated with just three words? (Some of you have yet to learn that concept, LOL. Just kidding.) Language is designed to be descriptive and oftentimes three well-articulated words can convey an enormous amount of expression.
The three most beautiful words ever spoken: I love you.
Three common words uttered while driving a car: What an idiot.
Three words students say to their parents: I need money
Three words parents say to their students: Get a job
Three words husbands ask their wives just prior to leaving the house: Are you ready?
Three words wives ask husbands during conversation: Are you listening?
Three powerful words: Please forgive me
Three whining words: It’s not fair
Three comforting words: Paid in full
Three sarcastic words: In your dreams
Three determined words: Stay the course
Three arrogant words: I was right
Three argumentative words: You were wrong
Three discouraging words: It’s not working
Three visionary words: Make it happen
Finally, the three most frustrating words in the entire English language: Some assembly required.
It doesn’t matter what you purchase, whether it’s sports equipment, appliances, furniture, computers, home decorations, or a toy—you will find these three instructional (and at times annoying) words stamped in tiny print on the package of most every item you buy. And even though most purchases have been produced and manufactured by the factory, and the bulk of the work has already been done, you are still being asked to add the finishing touches in order to complete the project.
Statistically, some assembly required or SAR pretty much guarantees a period of impatience, loss of composure, and quite possibly the utterance, or temptation to utter, at least one bad word. SAR typically works hand-in-hand with Murphy’s Law. Something will definitely go wrong… parts contained in the little plastic bag will be missing, or when assembly is complete you will find yourself with a bunch of leftover hardware. And for some odd reason, the pieces never really fit together as nicely as the numbered pictures drawn for you in the instruction booklet.
Fact of the matter is, SAR will always present a challenge of some kind. It calls for involvement, personal participation, contribution, and commitment. Don’t look now, but hidden throughout the pages of scripture, you will find these same three words, “Some assembly required,” repeated over and over again.
God who offers us the free gift of salvation (nothing we could ever do to earn or deserve it), also says we are to live a life worthy of our calling. (See Ephesians 4:1) In other words, after we receive salvation, we are instructed in God’s Word to draw from the grace He provides and make good choices and lifestyle changes. Another way to say that is SAR.
God who owns it all, who chooses to share the best He has with us, also says we are to honor Him with the tithe and be generous with our finances—reaching out to others in need, especially widows and orphans in their distress. (See James 1:27) SAR.
God who promises to forgive us of our sins when we confess them, also says we are to forgive one another. He says to “be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” (See Ephesians 4:32) SAR.
God who gifts us with the talents, skills, and natural abilities we need to be successful and fulfilled, also invites us to find our real purpose in this life by using our spiritual gifts to serve one another. (See 1 Peter 4:10) SAR.
God who continually goes before us, fights our battles, answers prayer, favors, protects, and provides our everyday needs, also said without faith it’s impossible to please him. (See Hebrews 11:6) SAR.
I could go on like this for quite some time. Our great God who is rich in mercy and, through His Son Jesus, revealed His grace—desires to give us the very best He has. That’s what covenant is all about. God has reaffirmed His new and everlasting covenant with us; and in the process, He says, “All that I am and all that I have belongs to you.”
However, by the same token, the covenant we have with God necessitates reciprocation on our part. It’s not a one-way street where all we ever do is receive and enjoy. That benefit is certainly included but not the only idea. We have a part in all this as well. Jesus confirms this with a statement made to the Father during a prayer for His disciples recorded in John 17:10, “All I have is Yours and all You have is Mine."
Ephesians 2:10 NLT
For we are God’s masterpiece (workmanship). He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago. (Some assembly required.)