By George Bowers Sr.
On a recent episode of Pawn Stars, a customer brought a small medallion into the store. It was in the shape of a two headed eagle and was quite eye catching, but nothing that appeared spectacular. The gentleman said he had recently purchased it at a garage sale for 75 cents. He had done some Internet research, however, and thought it may be worth considerably more. He was very right.
Because he was soon leaving the country, he didn't have time for the expert to appraise it, but one of the employees realized it was definitely a treasure. Not knowing its exact value, he took a chance and paid the man $6,000 in cash. That's a profit of 800,000 percent!
When the professional jeweler did come by later for the examination, he confirmed that it was a Polish medal made years ago in Russia by one of the most respected jewelers of all time. He also verified that it contained genuine jewels and real gold. Based on his expertise, he set the value of this 75 cent yard sale item somewhere between $30,000 and $40,000! Even though the customer made nearly $6,000, the pawn shop stood to make even more! Sadly, the former owner did not have any clue of its real worth and forfeited a great treasure unknowingly.
This story reminds me of a Bible verse describing our failure to identify the messiah when he came. Isaiah 53:3 says that, "He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not." Indeed, we had no clue how infinitely valuable Jesus was when he walked in our midst and we mercilessly crucified the king of glory. In retrospect, we missed and rejected the greatest treasure of all time! In him are everlasting life, eternal joy, and limitless peace. It's too bad we esteemed him so poorly.
Sadly, many today still fail to see the inestimable value of Jesus. We ignore his teachings and forget his words. We consider his ways out of date and worthless when all the while, he is the one of infinite worth.
Thankfully, unlike the original pendant owner, it's not too late for us. Even today, as we examine the evidence of his life, death, and resurrection, we can receive him as our savior and accord to him the worth he truly deserves. May we each recognize the treasure of treasures and ascribe to him all worth and worship and avoid the worst possible case of mistaken value.
George Bowers Sr. is the pastor of Antioch Church of the Brethren in Woodstock and the author of four books, including his latest book of poetry, "Wit and Wisdom of the Woods." He can be reached at email@example.com.