“unquotables” (aka clichés are stupid) #1
i’m not sure if there is a more devastatingly untrue phrase than “there is no such thing as a free lunch.” first of all, the very premise of the statement is a complete failure; i have had plenty of free lunches. whether i had a coupon or was the subject of someone else’s charity is beside the point, but i am certain that i have eaten, enjoyed, and savored more free lunches than i can count (such being the result of a college student’s credo to never turn down free food). in nearly all these cases someone else footed my bill, but i nonetheless enjoyed the meal that i didn’t pay for and didn’t deserve.
second of all, the underlying meaning of this common phrase is an absolute disaster. the point that some people try to make with this disbelief in free lunches is that even if you didn’t pay money for the meal that you consumed, the person responsible for your discounted repast will try to find some other way to make you pay. they might ask you for a favor, there might be an insinuated quid pro quo, maybe the person’s very presence is the cost of your meal, but the widely held belief is no one would just give you food for nothing in return (and that this sick practice isn’t simply limited to sustenance). while this may be the case most of the time, it is obscene to think of free things as being nonexistent. the thing is, not many people believe in something for nothing and, far worse, don’t believe in Grace. in the world of ubiquitous statements of “what’s the catch?”, people are certain that everything to be owned has to be paid for and that if someone tells you something is free, he is lying through his teeth. they could not be more wrong. as every Spirit-filled, Bible-reading Christian knows, we have Grace through our belief in Salvation. we know that the best of men is a man at best and falls dreadfully short of the Glory of God; consequently, we need Grace. and God offers this incorruptible Grace freely, with no strings attached.
what’s more, is that by the Grace of God that is given to us, we in turn may give grace to others. whether we do so by giving up our time to help someone we barely know or pay for a poor college kid’s lunch, we can give grace because God has shown us Grace (“we love because He first loved us,” same concept). so yes, i will enjoy another free lunch. and another. and another, until Grace runs out (which it won’t, so there).