by the Rev. Dr. Cecelia A. Walker
Director of Pastoral Care, Princeton Baptist Medical Center
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 13:45-46
As we go through life we will have many discoveries, but there is nothing that compares to being a part of the God’s kingdom. There is nothing more valuable than being in the will of God and being member of the body of Christ. That decision however, will often require giving up our plans.
Matthew 13 immediately follows a confrontation Jesus had with religious leaders, which culminated with Him identifying His disciples as His closest family. He declared: “whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.” He established the difference between the disciples and the religious leaders of the day – the disciples obeyed the Father’s will, the religious leaders did not. The essence of this parable is this: the kingdom of God is worth all a person has – and so very much more! Entrance to the kingdom occurs with a commitment to obey God, a giving up of our agenda, replacing our will for God’s will – in a word – surrender.
We have no more fundamental task in life than facing up to the fact that although there are millions of options presented to us, most have fleeting value. It is very possible to pay too much (too much time, money, energy) and confuse something that has only temporary value with something that is of eternal value. It is best to not only recognize the genuine, good and truly valuable, but to also organize our lives around what is of ultimate worth.
The Southern Baptist preacher, Carlyle Marney is quoted as having said: “there is no agony in life more acute than that experienced when we realize we have paid too much.” When we recognize fully the value of life in the presence of the Savior, now and in life eternal, no sacrifice we make will be worthy to be compared with the glory that will be revealed in us.
Dear God, we surrender ourselves into Your hands, to do as You will. Without reservation and with infinite confidence we trust You to always do what is right and good. Thank You for Your immeasurable love. In the Name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.