postage_increase_4The U.S. Postal Service says that the price of a first-class “Forever Stamp” (you know, the kind you can use anytime in the future to mail a letter, even if postal rates go up) will increase again to 46 cents on January 27. We’re advised to buy now before the higher price takes effect.

That’s an entertaining bit of trivia for us who use e-mail instead of postal mail, but it makes me wonder: Who did they consult about this? God only knows how long they’ll have to honor that price. Did they bother to ask whether the Postal Service will be around that long?

Frankly, I believe we invoke the promise of forever rather carelessly these days.

Publisher’s Clearing House promises to give the winner of this year’s sweepstakes “$5,000 per week forever.” They mean that they’ll pay $5,000/wk. to the winner and, upon the winner’s death, $5,000/wk. to anyone the winner designates for the remainder of that person’s life. In their book, a weekly payout for two partial lifetimes is a “forever” promise.

Pardon me, but it isn’t. Not by half.

Only the God of eternity makes “forever” promises that mean anything. He promises us joy forever (Ps. 16:11), divine protection forever (Ps 121:1), and the fullness of life forever (John 3:16).  No purchase required.