My words fell on ears at attention. All eyes were on me as I asked if anyone wanted $1.91. Some snickered. Some raised their hands to accept the currency. Some sat in stone silence wondering where I was going with this. I told them it had to do with 1978.
I began with, “How do we define value?’ How do we determine what is important. How do we decide if something is worth pursuing with effort and resources? I continued with a couple of stories in the Bible in Matthew 13 where a someone finds a treasure in a field, and someone finds a pearl of great price.
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.” “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.”
So, what was the theme? Jesus speaks of what people PERCEIVE from the visual standpoint when they see and find a treasure or see and find something valuable like a perfect pearl. We understand that. The Gospel is THAT important, and that’s why it should be shared at home, in public, at our work-places or places of business transactions, at vacation destinations, or during our daily proclivities. I urged those listening that it was very important that I was going to give them $1.91, and wanted to know who was interested.
I said that I am thinking of a number between 1 and 100. Whoever guesses it, or comes closest to it, gets the $1.91. Some chose not to participate, indicating with body language that it wasn’t enough to get excited about. Many did guess, and I told the “winner” that I was going to give them the $1.91. The person to whom would receive the money, showed a particular level of interest because that person KNEW ME. Because of that, the person KNEW there was going to be more than just $1.91. That person was right……..
I produced a US Government mint set in a plastic, sealed case from 1978 with 6 coins.
That person was so surprised. The other people thought I should have given more information so they knew what they were doing. The lesson is like Jesus said. A soul is worth so much more than a mint set. But $1.91 in everyday coins is much different than $1.91 in a highly polished beautiful case. A 1975 set from San Francisco where the dime has no “S” is worth over $200,000. A 1937 set is worth about $3,000. So, looking at perceived value, Jesus leads us to souls, who are people of great price.
“Lord, help us looks past the everyday people who have been beat up by life, and have life’s scars tarnished their value and appearance. Help us to look at people like Jesus does: bright, shining, clean and worth a lot more than a casual glance. Help us to see people who need to be sealed by the Holy Spirit in salvation. Help us to see them as treasures and pearls of great price. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”