Written by Renée Embree
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.” (Matthew 13:44-46)
I read this passage recently and realized I’d fallen into a slump. I had begun to carry this attitude that following Jesus — joining God’s Kingdom work — was getting to be too much heavy slogging. I was in a “woe is me” state and it wasn’t good for anyone. I was having quite a pity party, saying to myself, “Look at the churches in decline, look at the challenges we’re having around summer student grants, look how unpopular Christianity is in culture…woe is me!”
Where do you fall into a pity party about following Jesus? Where has it gotten hard and lost its shine?
In this passage in Matthew, people couldn’t believe they were so lucky to find such an amazing treasure and have the opportunity to “get in” and be a part of it. They did everything they could and liquidated everything they had because nothing compared to the treasure. It was worth their everything; they literally gave up everything else they had – they sold pots, pans, horses, probably even their home – just to have this amazing treasure.
This struck me hard. As long as we think anything may be more valuable than fellowship with Jesus in his Kingdom, we can’t be His disciple or follower. This caused me to ask myself, “What am I tempted to think is more valuable than fellowship with Jesus?”
- a job outside of ministry with less hassles and a bigger paycheque?
- my own success?
- getting to do my own thing?
- for everything just to be calm and stable?
- something else that looks shinier over there? What seems more valuable to you then Jesus and His Kingdom?
This is not new. To a rich man, Jesus said to sell everything to the poor. To a man who loved his family more than anything, Jesus said to leave his family, not look back, and come follow Him. To a man who was comfortable and attracted to Jesus for the blessings he’d receive, Jesus said, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head” (Luke 9:58).
Is Jesus and His Kingdom the greatest thing ever in your mind and heart?
Would you have said “No, thanks” to the treasure in the field or the pearl right now? “It’s not worth my EVERYTHING.”
It is actually easy for things and people to sneak in as more valuable than Jesus. It is easy for the amazing treasure of being God’s child, of being include in God’s Kingdom here and now, to lose its shine.
Has Jesus lost His shine for you?
What’s been sneaking in as more important or valuable than Jesus’ Kingdom?
What can you do to remember the treasure?
Ask Jesus to help you see (for the first time or again) the amazing treasure that He is.
I am praying for you – that Jesus is your treasure. I am praying you have a breakthrough and this relationship with Christ would be the shiniest, most valuable treasure at the centre of your life.
There are people I regularly pray for to see Jesus as the greatest treasure – family members and friends that don’t know Jesus, youth who have had seeds planted in their hearts long ago and am praying for them to come to fruition, churches that seem in a slump, and leaders that seem in a slump.
Jesus is the greatest treasure of all. He is worth our all. May He be the shiniest person in your life.