There is something in human nature that makes us interested in finding treasures. As children, my brother, sister and I put a few toy treasures in a box and hid it. A few hours later we followed the treasure map and “found” it!
This stimulating sensation of finding a valuable treasure is not lost as we become adults. Just look at all the various TV productions where people hunt for bargains at flea markets or bring their heirlooms to the Antiques Roadshow. There seems to be a special thrill in being happily surprised. The most memorable discoveries are made when there are a series of historical clues and family drama that makes the piece tell its own story. One could say it gives its testimony.
Jesus used clues from the past and present in order to make us curious about who he was. He also tapped into the treasure-hunt emotion by saying that the life of Heaven on earth is like a treasure or a pearl that was found by a merchant, who then sold everything he had in order to buy it (Matthew 13:44-45). He spoke about the extravagant joy and celebration that happens when the lost children of God are found. I have also noticed that he talks about himself and the miracles he performed as being clues, testimonies to a greater revelation. What he says and what he does (culminating in his death and resurrection) is like drawing a line between dots from 1 to 100 and, when you’ve finished, there is a picture.Connecting the dots doesn’t start with Jesus and his signs. The life and actions of the man from Nazareth are the continuation of God’s faithful love. Jesus completes the picture that involves Abraham, King David, the prophets and many others. In his constant argument with the Jewish leaders, Jesus is trying to convince them that the Scriptures and the Prophets testify about him.
Jesus forgives the sins of the lame man coming through the roof and, on top of that, heals him, in order to show that God has come to earth and offers us a new start. He heals a young man who was blind from birth. The miracle is evident but even his parents are afraid to admit that this testifies about God being at work through Jesus.
You and I can share our testimony in various ways. From a recent, concrete event to the moment of our “born again-experience”. We also testify about our values and trust in Jesus through our lifestyle. However, what I want to underline here are two things.
- Our life with Jesus is a never-ending journey of discovering new treasures. Part two of our Vision 2030 underlines that, to grow in Jesus. I encourage you to stay on the journey of discovering God’s Kingdom here on earth, so you continually and gladly give up anything that stops you from walking with Jesus.
- Let the “dots connect” in your life. One day might seem like every other and what you do in practical service might not seem so much, but added together they give a testimony about the One you serve. Inspiration for more of this can be found in the third part of the vision folder, act like Jesus.
This text has been published in Die Heilsarmee Magazin #9/2017