Last weekend one of my daughters needed to buy a car. She wanted me to help her, so I remained easily accessible by phone. We talked through what she should expect when she was interacting with the salespeople at the dealership. She prepared herself with clear parameters of what kind of car she wanted and what she could afford to pay. She committed to call me regularly and always before she made any decisions. She steeled herself for the negotiating process, the game where the salesman shuttles back and forth between the customer (amateur) and the mysterious (professional) person “in the back.” Like me, she hates the entire car-buying procedure. However, she needed a car and there seems to be no other way to do it.

By the middle of Saturday afternoon, she found a car and negotiated what seemed like a fair price. I breathed a sigh of relief. It had not been easy for her, but she negotiated effectively and appeared to survive the process without getting ripped off. Unfortunately, the game was not yet over. She still had to face the financing guy. She was unprepared for what she encountered there and the guy hustled her. She came out of that meeting with a pit in her stomach and a 30% increase in financial obligations. How frustrating! I wonder how those financial predators live with themselves.

How different is Christ! He is honest, gentle, innocent, kind, and mild. He always protects the interests of those who come to him. During this Holy Week, I am particularly grateful for the Grace of God who bears the penalty we sinners deserve. We do not need to prepare or steel ourselves. We come to him just as we are and he blesses us with protection and all good gifts. That is better than winning mega millions!