This June will be my oldest daughter Jessica and her husband Bailey’s 3rd wedding anniversary. Time seems to go by so fast. Just before her wedding day, I wanted to purchase a beautiful set of pearls for her so that she would always remember them as a gift from her parents, and also one that she could wear on her special day. Not long after the wedding and once they had settled into their first home, she realized they were missing. She had found the bracelet and earrings, but the necklace was lost. She was so sad that she couldn’t find them. I was sad too, when I heard that she had lost them.
Just this Sunday morning I received a text from my daughter as she was preparing for a little getaway with her husband. She wrote, “Guess what priceless wedding present I found in our luggage today?” It was early and I was still trying to see the message clearly as I was just waking up. I replied, “No clue.” She wrote back, “The pearl necklace you bought me!” Oh for joy! I was so excited for her. They had been missing for almost 3 years! I imagined her joy was greater than mine. I was also reminded of the scripture about the pearl of great value. So was Jessica. We eagerly pulled out our Bibles from 400 miles apart from each other and searched out that scripture. The next text we sent to each other (almost simultaneously)was the reference to the same story in the Bible. We were on the same page with each other, mother and daughter without knowing it. It was a special moment.
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it.” (Matthew 13: 45-46, ESV)
Have you ever gone searching for something of great value and then once you found it, sold everything you had so you could purchase it?
I think about the great cost it is for us as believers to follow Christ. He is that fine pearl that we have found. Do we continue to value that fine pearl? What are all the things that we so willingly have given up and sacrificed to follow Him? Maybe it has been a painful sacrifice, but the joy has outweighed it all? Or maybe you have found the fine pearl, but are still contemplating the cost?
Conversely, I think of Christ who left glory in His Deity with the godhead to come to earth in human form. He chose to humble himself by taking on the form of a human being, even to become obedient to death on a cross (See Philippians 2). In Hebrews 12:2 it says that Christ, “for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame.” Death did not hold its victory over Him. His goal was to reconcile humankind to himself. The joy set before Him? Huh? To endure the cross? Who would find that joyful? God alone…because His plan was perfect. It was His joy to know that He was purchasing back mankind, once and for all for His own glory. You are a fine pearl to Him. Your value is so great, that Christ laid down His life and then raised it back up again for you. And because He now lives, we too live and we all have a citizenship in heaven that we are waiting for with Him.
Christ gave everything for you. Will you answer the call in your heart to give everything you have in turn for Him? If you are a believer, will you continue to count that cost daily? Maybe even considering it all joy… even when trials come? If you are searching for that fine pearl, will you sell everything you have to purchase it? It’s the greatest cost and the greatest reward!