Monday, August 7, 2017
Matthew 13:44-46 - Parables of the Hidden Treasure and the Pearl
“The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field. Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls. When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it!"
What a way to start off the week men!
Can you believe how amazing it is to have a clean slate, to know that you are loved no matter what you've done, no matter how badly you've screwed up? Can you believe that in our sin, in our selfishness, in our utter depravity and addiction, the Father sent HIS Son, Jesus Christ, to pay our penalty on the cross so that we could have relationship with Him and be made whole? The depth of this good news is more than my mind can comprehend, but I tell you what... I'm unbelievably grateful for it today.
We celebrated my twins birthdays with some friends at my in-laws house this past weekend. 7 years ago the same weekend, the nasty truth of my affair came out and I was kicked out of my home. Were it not for the Grace of God and the power of forgiveness, the celebration this past weekend would never have happened, because our precious twins would never have been born. The life I get to live is a life that I don't deserve, with people I don't deserve to be sharing it with, built on a grace and freedom that I could never have imagined or understood on my own. There is nothing worth more to me than my relationship with Jesus.
This is the power of surrender and humility - recognizing that there is something that is more valuable than everything else... this relationship with OUR HEAVENLY FATHER.
The story from Matthew above mirrors the gratitude in my heart perfectly. This treasure we've discovered in Jesus Christ is worth selling everything we have, giving up our rights to absolutely anything in this world, enduring absolutely any kind of persecution, hardship, or difficulty for the glory of God. There's no sacrifice to great to hang onto this one thing. And it's worth pursuing and running after no matter what for the rest of our lives.
Men, we run after Jesus, because He first ran after us. No one will ever love us like this. And in this perfect love, He's made a way for us to live as the men we were created to be. Unshackled, free, alive. This is a treasure beyond all comprehension, and I pray that we each understand the value of that treasure in a new way this morning, and also understand the value inside of each of us as a result.
Questions for discussion:
1. Like the parable of the rich young ruler, what treasures of this world are you having trouble letting go and laying down, to run more unencumbered after the One who gave His life for you?
2. What are some of the images that come to mind when you think about things of incredible value to you? What makes them so valuable to you?
3. Do you struggle to believe that you are treasured and valuable?
4. What could possibly be unlocked in your freedom and healing if you understood your value as a Son of the most high God, and also understood the infinite value found in Jesus?
Father, give us a singular pursuit, tunnel vision focus on Jesus this week, and help us to live as men who know the unbelievable value of what's been done for us and given to us in Jesus Christ!