Over the years, I've enjoyed the television program Antique Roadshow on PBS. The show travels to different locations around the country and experts in furniture, coins, art, clothing, etc. wait as people bring in everything from junk to historical treasures. Those bringing items to be appraised often have no idea of the value of what they are bringing. Some come out of curiosity; others come wanting to show off their family heirlooms. A few come out of desperation, hoping to be told that they own something that others will pay a fortune for.

In one memorable episode, an elderly gentleman brought in a blanket that had hung in his grandmother's house for years. The tradition in the family was that the blanket had once belonged to Kit Carson, so the man thought that it might be valuable. Don Ellis, expert in Indian artifacts, told the man that the blanket could be worth as much as half a million dollars, not because of the connection to Carson, but because of the historical value of this relic merely as an example of Indian artisanship. Ellis called it "a national treasure."

The blanket's owner, identified only as Ted, began to cry. He said, "My grandparents and parents were poor farmers ...." He was thrilled to discover that he possessed such a treasure, yet couldn't help but lament the fact that his family had gone all that time without realizing what they had. They had lived in poverty, while owning something worth a fortune.

I see lots of people living that way every day. So much hurt, so much suffering, such a lack of hope, while God freely offers exactly what they need. They struggle to find strength for the day, while God longs to give them power without measure. They search for meaning and purpose, while God waits with the eternal perspective that makes sense of everything. These people deal with guilt, remorse and shame, while God offers forgiveness and a new start. The treasure is there for the taking. All they have to do is recognize the value of what God has to offer.

We often overlook the treasure that is available to us
The apostle Paul wrote: “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9). God offers us riches beyond belief, not in material goods, but in spiritual ones, valuables that will never waste away. All we have to do is accept the treasure He has to offer.

I'd like to tell you more. Write to me at tim@hopeforlife.org or visit our blog at www.hopeforlife.org. Don't overlook the treasure that is yours for the taking.