Sermon in a nutshell: Matthew 13:44-58
Do you still remember the words of the song that our choir sang last Sunday? I do!
I believe in springtime: Fresh and new and bright; I believe in morning dew and shining morning light. I believe in sunbeams, melting all the snow; and I believe when winter’s done the streams will run and rivers flow!
We believe in change. We believe in transformation. Have you seen your children or grandchildren growing? Or have you seen any child in our church after a couple years? You would not believe what you see! They look different! So tall and so handsome and beautiful! They are not the ones that you knew!
It happens to the children all the time. However, it can happen to adults, too! Today’s Bible passage reports us that it happened to Jesus. When Jesus started his public ministry and came back to his hometown people said these wondering questions: “Where did this man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers?” “Isn’t this the carpenter’s son? Isn’t his mother’s name Mary, and aren’t his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? Aren’t all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?” They confessed that the young Jesus that they knew was gone! This Jesus was a totally different man! They still could not figure out that Jesus was God!
Even though we are just human beings, we also believe in transformations. We are created by the “image of God” and it has been restored by the blood of Jesus. What Jesus has done on the Cross, we can continue in our lives, which is called “Sanctification.” It is a continuous process of selection. It depends on our priorities in our lives. Which one do we value more?
When we find a treasure hidden in the field, some people went and sold all that they have to buy the field. Some don’t. When we find a pearl that has great value, some people sold everything they have and buy it. Some don’t. When we hear a sermon or read the Bible, we have to make a choice. We have to give up our earthly or worldly things to get the heavenly treasure and Kingdom pearl. When we make that choice once, people may not notice the difference. However, if we make the choice over and over again in a long period, people start noticing the transformation that takes place in our lives.
Once again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish. When it is full, the fishermen pulled it up on the shore and sat down and collected the good fish in baskets but threw the bad away. It is a matter of choice. Life presents all kinds of things, good and bad. We have to make a choice which one to store in our soul. Grudge, hatred, revenge, anger, greed; these things we have to throw away. Forgiveness, love, grace, giving; we collect them. If we keep choosing these things over a long period of time, we will live in the Kingdom of God. I pray that after ten years, people can say about us, “Who are you? You are totally different person! (in a good way)”
- What is the one thing that you want to still keep if you have to lose everything but one?
- What are the things that you have to throw away to be better and better everyday?