Last week I wrote about treasure that is marred, yet still a treasure. I wrote that we who belong to Him are treasures in God’s eyes, no matter how flawed. We are the apple of His eye (Zechariah 2:8), the sheep of His pasture (Psalms 100:3), the hidden shafts in His quiver (Isaiah 49:2), and even His ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20).
This week I’d like to turn the telescope around, so to speak, and focus on the immeasurable treasure we have in God and His kingdom.
Jesus told a parable (earthly story with a heavenly meaning) about a man who discovered a plot of land that had something extremely valuable on it. Could have been oil, I guess, or gold maybe. The man went and sold everything he had to buy that plot of land. Jesus said this man’s story portrayed how much the kingdom of God is worth, immeasurable treasure, worth so much a man would give anything for it.
You’ve found treasure before, maybe not digging at your back door the way we did when we found the old saw. But treasure, yes! You found your car fob after frantic hunting, you found your phone underneath your car seat gone stone dead, you found a $100 bill you’d dropped in a WalMart parking lot thinking never to see it again. It is such a thrill to get those things back in your hands. Even if the finder is someone who makes fun of your stupidity in leaving your car fob stuck in a cup of pencils, or your glasses in plain view on the foyer table, you can take the ribbing because you’re so glad to have your object, your treasure, back.
There are unnecessary but precious treasures you find again after many years. For me it was a letter to me from my Dad, the only letter he, who died when I was sixteen, ever wrote me. It had been packed away in a box of teenage keepers to be found so many years later. I was looking at my recipes one day and found a postcard, penny postcard, with a recipe for making cornbread sent me by my mother when I was a new bride in 1966. It might be a picture we’d not seen in forever, or a pair of special earrings, maybe one special earring lost from the other.
Then there are treasures you didn’t know existed but you come upon with a burst of joy: a hand size petoskey stone on the shore of Lake Michigan, a whole beautiful star fish right at your feet as you walk the St.George Island beach, or simply a sunset that makes you exclaim, “Thank you, God!”
Some of the very best treasures are the intangible ones like the sunset. You can’t hold them in your hand but you can hide them in your heart: the hugs of grandchildren (well, children too!), a phone call from a friend at just the right time, a word of encouragement, an answer to prayer, the sight of a bird making a joyful flight.
No matter how precious, for which of these would we sell everything we had in order to possess? It’s a probing question. Would we give anything?
I had a music teacher once who said to me, “Don’t tell me you would give anything to be able to play as I do. Just go ahead and give anything.” St. Paul yearned over the unbelievers around him and said “I would give up my own place in heaven if then you could take my place.” A sign tucked around in various places at our church reads something like “What would you give so others could hear the gospel?”
Immeasurable treasure. The kingdom of God within you. Would you give anything to have that? Yet, it is free! Jesus did give anything, everything, so that we might have this treasure. Our works are good only to express our gratitude to Him and, hopefully, lead others to trust Him. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:” Ephesians 2:8
You are God’s treasure. And He is our immeasurable treasure! “Christ in you the hope of glory.” Colossians 1:27. Greater is He who is within you than he that is without.