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22 December 2012

What's Your Treasure?

He was despised and rejected of men.  They rejected Him without a cause.  And yet, He still offered them something better than what they had obtained apart from Him.  They were so attached to the treasure that they had purchased by their own work, that they could not imagine there was something better.

It is interesting that Holy Spirit will often bring treasures to us in the form of people.  People that see the world a little different.  People that perceive the Christ from a different place.  People who know His grace in a way that we may not have yet obtained.  The question we must ask ourselves is this; "Am I so attached to what I have obtained that I cannot let go of it to receive something better?"  The treasure that comes in the form of people is very often a new idea or a new revelation on an old subject of which we have convinced ourselves otherwise.  

There is a pain, a ripping and tearing, that takes place when we release our little treasure.  We can't imagine there is something better that awaits us.  We fail to think, let alone, believe, that a gift of greater value may have been purchased for us.  The people God sends into our lives are very often the wrapping around the treasure He wants to provide.  Is there a thought, a belief, a revelation that you have received through toil and sacrifice?  Are you willing to lay it in Father's hand, just because He asks?

Maybe you haven't thought in these terms.  There is a story from 1913, the demonstrates the point well.  It goes like this:




The Pearl Necklace

The cheerful girl with bouncy golden curls was almost five. Waiting with her mother at the checkout stand, she saw them: a circle of glistening white pearls in a pink foil box. 

"Oh please, Mommy. Can I have them? Please, Mommy, please!"


Quickly the mother checked the back of the little foil box and then looked back into the pleading blue eyes of her little girl's upturned face.  "A dollar ninety-five. That's almost $2.00. If you really want them, I'll think of some extra chores for you and in no time you can save enough money to buy them for yourself. Your birthday's only a week away and you might get another crisp dollar bill from Grandma."

As soon as Jenny got home, she emptied her penny bank and counted out 17 pennies. After dinner, she did more than her share of chores and she went to the neighbor and asked Mrs. McJames if she could pick dandelions for ten cents.
On her birthday, Grandma did give her another new dollar bill and at last she had enough money to buy the necklace.
Jenny loved her pearls. They made her feel dressed up and grown up. She wore them everywhere--Sunday school, kindergarten, even to bed. The only time she took them off was when she went swimming or had a bubble bath. Mother said if they got wet, they might turn her neck green.

Jenny had a very loving daddy and every night when she was ready for bed, he would stop whatever he was doing and come upstairs to read her a story. One night when he finished the story, he asked Jenny, "Do you love me?"
"Oh yes, Daddy. You know that I love you."
"Then give me your pearls."
"Oh, Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have Princess--the white horse from my collection. The one with the pink tail. Remember, Daddy? The one you gave me. She's my favorite."
"That's okay, Honey. Daddy loves you. Good night." And he brushed her cheek with a kiss.

About a week later, after the story time, Jenny's daddy asked again, "Do you love me?"
"Daddy, you know I love you."
"Then give me your pearls."
"Oh Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have my babydoll. The brand new one I got for my birthday. She is so beautiful and you can have the yellow blanket that matches her sleeper."
"That's okay. Sleep well. God bless you, little one. Daddy loves you." And as always, he brushed her cheek with a gentle kiss.

A few nights later when her daddy came in, Jenny was sitting on her bed with her legs crossed Indian-style. As he came close, he noticed her chin was trembling and one silent tear rolled down her cheek.
"What is it, Jenny? What's the matter?"
Jenny didn't say anything but lifted her little hand up to her daddy. And when she opened it, there was her little pearl necklace. With a little quiver,she finally said, "Here, Daddy. It's for you."
With tears gathering in his own eyes, Jenny's kind daddy reached out with one hand to take the dime-store necklace, and with the other hand he reached into his pocket and pulled out a blue velvet case with a strand of genuine pearls and gave them to Jenny. 

He had them all the time. He was just waiting for her to give up the dime-store stuff so he could give her genuine treasure.

What are you hanging on to?
--- Author Unknown 

So often we work hard and sacrifice to obtain what we value.  When Heavenly father comes seeking to take it, we hold on tight, as if He doesn't understand.  We offer many things in it's place, but He isn't asking for those things, He wants the one thing that prevents us from receiving the real treasure He has to give.

We started this post talking about people and the treasure they bring from the Father.  The deep issue is trust. You know yourself, you trust Holy Spirit in you.  You know what the treasure you hold has cost you. But, can you trust Holy Spirit in the one He brought to you?  When you can't find trust for the person, can you find trust for Holy Spirit in them? Is Daddy asking you to give Him your dime store treasure so that He can offer you something better?  Have you been allowed to purchase your own little treasure simply so that you can come to know the treasure that was purchased for you?  It takes time, growth and maturity in order recognize the precious among the worthless.  The question is, now that you are mature, will you extract the precious from the worthless?  Or will you hold onto your dime store treasure?