“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”
Jesus portrays Himself as another searcher. Here He wants us to see three things.
One is that we are, individually and together, the pearl of great value. To have this pearl He is prepared to give everything that He has, even – as we know – His own life. We need to reflect on our value in His eyes, as He sees us not just as we are now but as we can and will be when transformed by His love and care. Indeed He might well ask, ‘When will you begin to believe how much I love you – and how precious you are to Me?”
Another insight is gained when we consider the parable from the point of view of ourselves as the searcher. What am I looking for in my life – in what am I investing my time, effort and wealth? It is not necessarily answered by what we would say but in the way we live and what it reveals about our ‘treasures.’ The contents of our homes, the things we wear, the cars we drive, the work we do and the hours we spend on work and other activities tell a real story of the person involved and of our priorities. To what end are we devoting our life?
The third insight is gained when we look at the people around us. Each one of them is pursuing something – whether they have consciously identified it or not. What would it take for them to be able to identify and if necessary realign their focus whilst they can? There is the devastating story of the man who said that he had spent all his life striving to get to the top of the ladder – only to eventually find that it was leaning against the wrong wall! Do they see anything different in me?
Jesus great teaching on life was that we should not have the things of this world as our priority for, after all, they will have no value when we leave it. Instead, He says,
- “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:19-21)
- “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33)
Live for eternity – and let your life be a witness to others
Forgive me Lord where I focus on myself and this life and become careless of others and the next life. Help me please to have my heart where the true treasure lies – and not to miss out through being world-wise. Amen.