Amongst my cherished childhood memories, is my pink, plastic “piggy” bank. My father would reach down into his pocket
as I would extend my open hand, palm-up, waiting in delight for his coins. Immediately, I would run to my room and reach up to my “piggy” bank and drop the coins, one by one, and listen for the “clink, clink”. Then, I would pick up my bank and shake it in excitement. Oh, the simple pleasures of our childhood! My “piggy” bank was my first unrecorded savings. My treasure chest. I remember the day, my pig would no longer hold my coins, and my mom helped me open it up and shake the coins out onto my bed. She counted them for me and soon we were off to the store. I was going to search for things that would make me happy in exchange for my treasure. Something special just for me.
As an adult, I’m reminded of a far greater treasure my Heavenly Father has given me. Paul speaks of a treasure we, as God’s children, have received. “But we have this treasure in clay jars, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.” 2 Corinthians 4:7.
Paul compares our bodies to clay pots, pots made of dirt and water, but skillfully shaped by the hand of the Potter, at His wheel. The first man, Adam, was designed by His Creator when He stretched down to the lowest place of His Creation and picked up the dirt, handful by handful. He molded Adam, layer by layer, limb by limb, into His image. And then He gazed in satisfaction at the first man. as Adam lay there, in a comatose like state. There was an important detail the Designer had yet to complete. Bending down, and drawing nearer to Adam, face-to-face, He gave Adam something that was of great value. Something from His very own being, from within. His breath, the very breath of God! I can imagine, as God touched Adam and breathed into Him the breath of life, that body of dirt, came to life! The lifeless body now moved, rose up, from the ground as it inhaled and exhaled. For the first time God’s creation looked into His face and spoke to Him. Oh to behold the face of God, in the stillness of the moment. And I wonder if the thought entered the Creator’s mind that one day Adam would choose to forfeit that intimate relationship and hide from him in the Garden of Eden because of sin.
Fast forward 4,000 years later to the Cross on Golgotha, a place of cruel death. In the darkness, a cry was heard. “It is finished”! God’s son, Jesus, bearing the sins of the world, since Adam’s first sin, breathed His last breath as His father turned away. But in breathing that final, shallow breath, in excruciating, unbearable pain, Jesus redeemed that face-to-face relationship of sinful man with His Creator. New Life was offered to those who were dead in their sins. All who believed in His death, burial and Resurrection are given New Life. This is the Treasure. The Gospel. A treasure within Paul that he carried and shared. The treasure that was carried with a great price. Sharing the treasure brought him ship wreck, stoning, beatings, and imprisonment. Paul, the Treasure Sharer. History tells us Paul was beheaded. As that clay pot was destroyed by the hands of men, the treasure within was not destroyed. It journeyed with him into the very presence of God, face-to-face.
And those of us who experience Salvation have been given the priceless treasure deposited freely into our jars of clay. At that moment, we were all given the treasure of grace, faith, and forgiveness by our Heavenly Father, the Potter. A treasure, eternal life, unearned by us, and paid for by the blood of His only son. It’s the treasure we receive with open, empty hands as “little children”. And oh the joy the gift brings into our lives! It is with us forever. Nothing we could do could merit the deposit. “For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2: 8-9).
Designed by the Potter to be as common clay pots for His use. But yet containing the treasure, the Gospel, and gift of salvation. The Holy Spirit dwells in our clay pots. he is invisible to man, but yet full of power. Only through the Holy Spirit’s power availed to us, do we testify of Him, and to minister to others. We are His workmanship, marked by His image and we are called to share Him to a world that can only see the Hand of the Potter through his jars of clay.
The Potter’s plan was to share the treasure within us with the world. It is not to be hoarded or used for our glory, but His. “You are the Light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shin before others, so that they may see your good works, and glorify your father, which is in Heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16) The Treasure Giver, God, is watching each of us, his Pots, his treasure chests. His desire is that we go about depositing His treasure, into the lives of others, so that they may also experience the joy of the Treasure Giver.
Dear Father, thank you for the Gospel treasure you have entrusted to us your children. Thank you for the price you paid for us to have that face-to-face relationship with you, with forgiveness of sins, through your precious Son’s blood. We lift up our clay pots to you. Take us into your hands. Shake the treasure within us, and renew us by your Holy Spirit’s power. Let your treasure spill out into the lives of others, to add more Treasure Shares, for your glory alone. In Jesus Name, Amen.