And so, at 5:00 Saturday morning (yes, 5:00 comes twice a day, who knew?), we were out of bed and hauling stuff out into the yard. We hadn't even gotten the first box set out before people were stopping by (we had advertised beforehand and had signs up on the major streets surrounding us). This is great, I thought. People are already pulling up. We're going to sell it all! But as the first few patrons came and went without spending a single dime, we began to wonder if our prices were too high. Before long, a woman commented that we had the best prices of all the yard sales she had been to that morning. . . but she still didn't buy anything.
By 10:00, we had sold a few things, but none of the major items I was sure would have been flying off the tables. After a few moments of deliberation, we posted a sign stating that prices were negotiable, thinking that maybe people would haggle. This helped some, and we sold a few more items, but still none of the bigger, more expensive items. It was hot. I was tired (and sunburned as I would later discover). But above all, I was discouraged.
By mid-afternoon, we posted another sign which read, "Everything must go! Make an offer." By that point, we just wanted to get rid of the stuff and were willing to accept extremely low offers if people would just take the stuff off our hands. We went in the house, leaving the screen door open so we could slip out if anyone stopped by. Some of the bigger items finally started going, and I was thrilled, but things still weren't moving fast enough for me. By 6:30, we decided to call it quits and brought tons of unsold items back in the house. In the 13 1/2 hours we spent that day, we made a whopping $115. Don't get me wrong, I'm pleased that we made that much. After all, it's $115 we didn't have before. But I was disappointed we didn't make more, and I was doubly disappointed that after all that work, we still had to make a trip to the Goodwill.
In the few days since our yard sale, I've wondered if I could have done anything differently to have achieved better results. Should I have advertised more? Should I have started with lower prices to begin with? Should I have done this? Should I have done that? But in the end, I came to the conclusion that if all the items had been free, we probably would have still ended up with stuff left over. Strange, huh?
But do you realize how many people, on a daily basis, pass up the greatest offer of all? Salvation is a free gift. Jesus purchased it for us with His blood, but it doesn't cost us a dime. Yet still, many shake their heads and say, "Free? No, thank you!" I just don't get it. The price doesn't get any lower. They'll never find a better deal. Why, oh why, do they pass it up? Perhaps it's because they realize that while salvation is free, living the Christian life is not. I don't know what it is that causes people to turn their noses up at the free gift of salvation, but I do know this, we need to be advertising for the Lord. Some truly don't know what salvation is all about. It's up to us to tell them.
Jason and I put up signs for the yard sale on Friday evening. All day Saturday I updated my Facebook and Twitter posts, letting people know we still had quality items for sale and where they could find us. I'm ashamed to say, however, that in all my advertising, I didn't tell one person about Christ. I was dedicated in telling others what I had to offer, but I neglected to tell anyone what He could offer.
Are we advertising for Christ? Are we telling the world about His love? Are we talking about His free gift? We should be!