Every once in a while we will hear a story like this one out of Carson City, NV. A reclusive old man who had lived in the same place since 1960 was found dead in 2012 at his home. According to the coroner the man’s body had been in the home for at least a month. It is assumed he died of a heart attack. He had no immediate relatives and no will. At the time of his death, he had only $200 in his bank account. As the man’s house was being cleared for sale, officials made a surprise discovery: they found gold bars and coins valued at $7 million.
Is there a spiritual message for each of us in this story? I believe there is. The question becomes are you hording riches worth many times more than this man’s gold? This man died with his wealth hidden within his home and unknown to everyone who knew him. Are you going to do the same thing? If you have riches worth more than this man, does anyone else know?
What am I talking about? We find our answer in 1 Peter 1:3-7. In these passages we read that God the Father through His mercy gave us the gift of faith and hope through His Son’s resurrection from the dead. We are told that these gifts of faith and hope are imperishable, undefiled, and unfading. In addition to that already good news, we are told that our faith is “more precious than gold.”
Ever since God put the Parable of the Broken Door on my heart in October of 2012, I have had an image in my mind of each of us as the front door to a home. Any door exposed to the elements will eventually be in need of repair and we are no exception. No matter how weathered and broken we might be, our door should always be open, allowing others to encounter Christ in us.
Yes, we are broken doors! The sin in our life causes our door to need repair. Perhaps our door only needs the hinges oiled. Perhaps it needs to be planed to fit the opening now that the house has settled over the years. Perhaps it has some rotted-out spots in need of putty, sanding and refinishing. No matter what it needs, it can be opened even in its broken condition. It appears that the man in the story kept his door always closed, never allowing others to enter.
Since our life is like a weathered door in need of much repair, it may falsely lead others to conclude that there is nothing of value inside. Yet, the Bible tells us that our faith is more precious than gold. The value of our faith exceeds the wealth of the man in the story. No one was aware of the man’s wealth. Now ask yourself this question. Do the people you encounter each day have any idea of the wealth you have inside? Do they see your faith in Jesus Christ alive and on display?
Take note of another important aspect in the story. The man died without a will. He made no plans to pass his wealth on to others. So I ask you, if your faith is more valuable than gold do you have a plan to pass it on to others? All too often we make our faith something personal between us and God. That runs counter to the great commission. Our faith is a gift from God and it is a gift that is meant to be shared. In Matthew 28:19-20 we are called to make disciples of all people and to share with them what has been entrusted to us.
If we fail to pass the extraordinary wealth of our faith, a wealth greater than gold, on to everyone we meet each day, at our death all of our gold may still be hidden inside. When our final day arrives someone might utter these words at our funeral: “I had no idea of the depth and value of this man’s faith in Jesus Christ.” If this were to happen as a result of us choosing to keep our faith hidden, then our story will have an even sadder and more bizarre ending than this man’s story.
At Broken Door Ministries we encourage everyone to BE THE DOOR through which others can enter to encounter Christ. Let your riches be known to all!
Dear Heavenly Father thank you for entrusting me with the wealth of my faith. Give me the courage to share it with others. In Jesus name I pray, amen!
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BIG ROAD TRIP
I have a big road trip coming up. I will be traveling to St. Patrick’s Catholic Church in Taylor Ridge, IL for a retreat on Saturday, November 5th and on the following weekend, Saturday, November 12th I will be at Bethany Lutheran Church in Rice Lake, WI for another retreat. I look forward to being with you.
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