PRINCIPLE: “When you want to be sure, check with the owner.”
While in seminary I worked part-time at a wonderful furniture store. Often I made deliveries. But I did spend time on the floor helping customers – especially on weekends when traffic was heavier. I enjoyed the people contact, but was always a little uneasy because I wasn’t really a furniture expert or salesman. I had no problems answering questions about smaller items, like lamps or small end tables (or candles or candy from the little gift shop that was part of the store). But when it came to bigger ticket items – like couches, bedroom suites, grandfather clocks – I didn’t feel real adequate. I didn’t know enough to answer all their questions, which of course, was necessary in making sales. So I would greet customers and offer to help, and would do so until such a question arose. Then I would politely tell them the owner would meet with them as soon as he was free. That’s when I began to believe in the simple principle “When you want to be sure, check with the owner.”
Now, many years later, I realize this is an important principle for life as well. So many times I do not have an answer for a question, or advice for a problem, or direction for a situation. I have learned, the hard way, that “When you want to be sure, check with the owner.” If I’m driving a rental car and it has a problem, I call the owner – They own the car and it’s their decision that counts. If the plumber finds a problem with our drain, before he fixes it he gives us the information and asks us if we want him to proceed. As the owners, it’s our responsibility to make the call. That’s why Paul wrote that “You are not your own; you were bought at a price.” (1 Cor. 6:19-20) When faced with a question, or a problem, or a situation it is only wise to check with the owner so we can do what He wants us to do. Wise obedience is the only way to be sure and right.
But while it’s possible that an owner knows little about his possession (I own some things I know little about!) Paul is talking about an owner knows what He has. Consider Paul’s frame of reference – certainly he knew the Psalmist’s words (139:13-16 MSG):“Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day.” Our owner is our creator! He knows us inside and out. Her knows what makes us tick. He knows what it takes for us to be whole and healthy. He knows what brings us into peace. And He loves us so deeply that when we were lost He paid the price to purchase us back. And He so deeply desires that we live in wholeness and health that He wants us to check in with him. “When you want to be sure, check with the owner.”
Perhaps you’re wrestling with a question. Or maybe you’re struggling to solve a problem. Possibly you’re searching for direction. “When you want to be sure, check with the owner.” It’s the wisest choice you can make. This might be the best reason when waking up each morning to declare, “I am not my own, but belong body and soul, in life and in death to my faithful Savior, Jesus Christ. Christ has fully paid for all my sins with his precious blood, and has set me free from all the power of the devil. He also watches over me in such a way that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my Father in heaven; in fact, all things must work together for my salvation. Because I belong to him, Christ, by his Holy Spirit assures me of eternal life and makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready from now on to live for him.”