In my little safe I keep a few of my most prized treasures. The reality of their true value is not much by any standards, but to me they are invaluable. What do I keep in there? Well, I’ll tell you. I have a collection of saki cups from Japan that my brother brought home when he went for a school trip and some chopsticks and a few Japanese coins. Plus, I have some post cards from friends who live far away and birthday cards from friends and family, and then I have a wooden flower I used as decor I set on my desk in my dorm room in college. Nothing of any real value, but like I said, it’s valuable to me.
I think of all other sort of ways we store our personal treasures. In the past people used treasure chest to bury in the ground. Going back in history further we see how people used jars sealed with treasures and buried them with the dead in tombs. The Dead Sea Scrolls were found in jars sealed in a cave. A treasure that was only found thousands of years later.
What do you treasure?
We consider something a treasure if it is of supreme importance to us. We’re the ones that decide something’s value. The value of something is based on how much we are willing to pay for it.
In the book of Exodus 33, there is an intriguing story that showcases a dialogue between Moses and God. Before this chapter, Moses had just came down from Mt. Sinai after receiving the Ten Commandments and caught Israel dancing around naked around a golden calf. Can you say, Oy Vey?
In chapter 33 the dialogue between God and Moses begins. God says, “Well, I can see I’m not wanted. You all can have the Promise Land, but I won’t be going with you.” I’m paraphrasing, of course.
What??!! Not going with us?! I can picture Moses shouting.
God is posing a choice before Moses and Israel. “What is it that you really want? Do you want Me? Or do you just want The Promise Land?”
In verse 15, we see Moses answer:
“If Your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here. For how shall it be known that I have found favor in your sight, I and Your people? Is it not Your going with us, so that we are distinct, I and Your people, from every other people on the face of the earth?”
How many of us would say that? How many of us would say, “Yeah God. I want You more than the Promise Land. More than the promises You’ve given me. I need Your presence more.”
And how many of us would say, “That’s cool, Lord if You don’t want to go with me. I’ll be fine with just the promise.”
A challenging question.
Asking myself this question has lead me to wonder how I really do value the presence of God in my life. Do I realize the treasure I have?
“But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surprassing power belongs to God and not to us.” 2 Corithians 4:7
What an awesome priviledge we carry within us to have the presence of God with us at all times!! We don’t have to go meet Him in a tent or in a tabernacle like the Israelites did. He’s living within us. Those who trust in Christ have become the treasure chest storing the presence of God inside us.
We might have to ask ourselves this question from time to time when some other thing we want or desire to see happen overtakes our true treasure, the presence of God. May we be challenged to prioritize and keep Him as our true treasure.
I also pray that this knowledge of the ever-present God in you be a comfort no matter what you are going through today. If you’re alone or if there are circumstances going on that are beyond your control, know He is with you, undergirding you with His mighty power and strength.
You are never alone.