Let’s re-imagine one of Jesus’ parables: The Treasure Hidden in the Field. A man finds a treasure in a field, he hides it back and then he goes home to his wife. “Honey! Pack up your clothes, we’re selling the house! Actually, you know what, don’t bother packing! Were selling our clothes and suitcases too! And we’re selling your jewelry and my tools and the pets and the kids! …Ok…well maybe not the kids. We’re going to sell everything! And we are going to go and buy DIRT!” Imagine his wife’s silently stunned expression looking more than slightly puzzled and checking his eyes for signs of a head injury. The man, not even stopping to breathe, much less assess the shock that his wife must be in: “Well…not just dirt. I found a field.” Then he stops to finally make eye contact, but still struggling to get words out because of his shortness of breath from running the entire way home. “…And in that field… I found…you won’t even believe it! a Treasure.”
The Treasure Principle is that when you find something that is worth EVERYTHING, you’ll give EVERYTHING to make it yours. Read on please, but this is where it goes from preaching to meddling…
What is holding so many of us back is that we have not gotten our eyes on the Treasure, so that we’re willing to give whatever it takes. I’m sorry if this hurts your feelings, please keep reading, I’ll be stepping on my own toes as well.
It breaks my heart when I have to go to the pulpit or our email list or make signs in front of classrooms to say “We need [insert: Bible class teachers, nursery workers, or whatever service it is you are too busy for]. And if we don’t get […] we just won’t be able to have a Bible Class/Nursery/etc. next week. So the same few people look around at each other and say “Well I guess I can help again.”
I heard about one preacher who got up into the pulpit one day and said “Folks, I’m sorry I can’t preach today because we don’t have any nursery workers,” and he walked back and served in the nursery that service. Now, they got a lot of Nursery workers the next week. It’s easy for me to write about this context in my position but truth be known, I am often in the same boat. There are many ministries that I could make time for but choose not to. But what does that say about us, when out of almost 500 God worshippers, only a handful are willing to [insert: serve, teach, give God their financial first fruits, etc.]
What’s going on here?! [Oh I just don’t have time to do Bible Class. I’m too tired to commit to a Life Group, You know I’d really love to be a regular Bible reader but I have so much going on with my business!]
One question: Where is your treasure? Because when our eyes are on the Treasure-it changes our perspective. I need to do a better job of keeping my eyes on the treasure. And I need to do a better job of showing my joy about finding it, because the conclusion I logically keep coming to is this: with such great needs as are in our community and in our own church family, and so many people here capable of serving them…we must not have really found the Treasure yet.