Life is like a supermarket trolley: no matter how you push it, it never goes in the right direction. Well, that was Brian and Bob’s experience as wandered through the supermarket, struggling to control their unruly trolleys. (You know what it’s like). They both saw lots of things they wanted but, just how do you deal with so much choice? And choose you must, because sooner or later, there is the checkout.
Brian and Bob were happy enough wandering through the store. They both saw lots of things they liked but they both found it was a struggle controlling their trollies.
“Oooh that looks interesting” said Brian as he reached up to put some Wicked Rice into his trolley. “I’ll give that a try”. Bob wasn’t so sure. He walked on and it was at this point they parted company, sometimes trollies just drift apart.
As Bob walked on through Life’s Supermarket Brian saw, next to Wicked Rice, was some Living Water. He considered it for a fleeting moment and chose to move on without picking it up, as he was distracted by some Evil Enchiladas. He had no idea what they were but he wanted some, so he put them in his trolley next to the rice. Brian tried to wheel his trolley backwards to the Living Water but discovered it only went one way, so he pushed his trolley forward.
SOMETIMES YOU NEED TO MAKE THAT CHOICE NOW, BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE. YOU DON’T KNOW IF A SECOND CHANCE IS COMING.
“Ouch!” he bumped his knee as one of the wheels got stuck and seemingly refused to rotate and acted like a brake. It slowed him down. He grumbled and grimaced as he tried to move his trolley forward. He was a trying hard to keep control of it but trollies can be hard. As he moved slowly he took the opportunity to pick up some bad beans and saucy sausages. He went to move on, then he thought “You know what, I’ll have a few more of them, they can’t do me any harm.”
SOMETIME WHEN YOU ARE HURTING IT CAN BE EASY TO MAKE BAD CHOICES.
As he moved forward he noticed again there was an offer on the Living Water. It looked like you got the Bread of Life with it, a kind of two for one. He tried to manoeuvre the trolley towards it but couldn’t make it go sideways. He tried looking from a distance to see exactly what the offer was. As he strained to see what it was, a man walked by and saw Brian looking at the bread. The man smiled and said “Man cannot live on bread alone” Brian laughed at that. This was true he thought and walked on.
PERSUASIVE TALK FROM WELL MEANING BUT FRANKLY MISLEAD PEOPLE CAN DISTRACT YOU FROM MAKING THE RIGHT CHOICE.
Brian continued on, his trolley seemingly having a mind of its own as it skewed sideways and bumped into the side of the aisle. He stopped and took a deep breath, he was annoyed at the lack of control he had over his trolley. He had noticed other people on their shopping trip of life had experienced trolley problems. Some had even fallen over. Some had given up. On the other hand he had noticed some people seemed to be fine with their trollies and they had so much more than him. Why was he so unlucky? He looked at the shelves he had clattered into. There was the Living Water again. “They are really trying to sell this” he thought.
SOMETIMES CIRCMSTANCES CAN OCCUR THAT CAN REALLY MAKE YOUR CHOICE BLACK AND WHITE
He noticed for the first time the water came with a free Cup of Salvation. Now that was a good offer. He went to read the small print on the cup. It’s good to read the small print in Life’s Supermarket.
As he picked up the cup, he noticed on the shelf next to the water were some Tempting Truffles.
OH NO – NOT AGAIN! IT IS TEMPTATION THIS TIME
He put the cup down and moved swiftly with his trolley, yes strangely but swiftly with his trolley, towards what was tempting him - The Truffles. He picked them up and checked his watch. His time was up, he had better checkout.
Did he have time to look at the Living Water offer? He chose not to bother. It was probably too good to be true.
He made his way to the checkout. He saw Bob and waved. Bob wave back and shouted across to him “How’s your shopping trip been in Life’s Supermarket?”
“It’s been alright,” Brian replied “I’ve picked up all sorts of things, some good some not so much. My trolley has been awful though. I’ve felt like I haven’t been in control at all”
Bob said he had experienced exactly the same problems and then he explained “…although when I picked up the Living Water and put it in my trolley, an assistant came along and helped me with the shopping.”
“I didn’t know you could get help” said Brian.
“I read it on the side of the packaging and decided to believe it. I chose to give it a try. And I also found with the cup of salvation you get all your shopping paid for.”
Brian stood there dumbfounded. His mouth dropped wide open. “Really? He asked. “Everything paid for”
“That’s what it said on the packaging. That’s why I put it in the trolley. That and the free assistant. They’ve been amazing, really helped me when I was in trouble in aisle 3. Anyway, here I am at the checkout, checking out” said Bob with a smile and a hope.
“Me too” Said Brian “My shopping trip of Life’s Supermarket has ended as well”.
Brian looked at the cashier, then over at Bob, then his mouth dropped open, again, but this time in amazement as the cashier with Bob saw the Cup of Salvation in his trolley and waved him through.
Brian then looked back at the cashier at his checkout. The cashier looked back at him. They both looked in the trolley. It was too late. He knew it.
Brian could see Bob leaving. Was that a new shopping trolley Bob was pushing? Brian felt his teeth beginning to gnash as he realised what he had chosen, or hadn’t chosen. To think all he had to do was believe, and pick up the Living Water and put it in his trolley. Why hadn’t he done it? It really was that simple. It was then Brian felt the tears starting to well up and his anger made his teeth gnash even harder.
Lord God, Almighty Father. Lord Jesus. Holy Spirt we welcome you and ask you to lead and guide our hearts and minds as we come before you now. We will now enter a time of prayerful reflection. To consider the story and your trolley as you push through Life’s Supermarket.
Life really is like a supermarket trolley. It is difficult to push, it rarely seems to go in the right direction, no matter how it is shoved, but we thank you Lord that there is help.
First of all - Let us reflect on our trolleys, or in other words our lives. We acknowledge life is difficult to control on our own, Lord we acknowledge you are willing to step in and help.
Show us what we should do, show us what choices we should make.
Lord Jesus, we thank you we can pick up the Living Water. Lord we want to pick you up and bring you into our lives.
We acknowledge life is an opportunity to ask you in. For you to save us from the things we do wrong.
Lord Jesus, we choose you. Lord Jesus, We choose you the Son of God. We ask you now to please come into our lives.
Lord please bless us with your Holy Spirit that we may move through our lives according to the way you want us to live. Holy Spirit please come and assist us and help us.
We thank you Jesus for the choice. We thank you Lord Jesus we choose you. The son of God.