Have you ever lost something precious or tried to find something special that was hard to find? Something is important to find when the rest of a schedule gets cancelled to find it. It does not matter if other appointments are not met or other things cannot get done. Everything is sacrificed for the task.
I had a reminder of the lesson when I lost a hearing aid. I had just put out precious money to get hearing aids for my deteriorating hearing. Later in the week during a walk outside I brushed my head. The tiny hearing aid was slung off my ear. I immediately stopped, cancelled my walk, postponed everything else, and started to hunt for the missing hearing aid. Five minutes turned to an hour and then more. I laid down bright yarn on the ground and began systematically going through every square inch of ground in a 15×15 foot area. I finally found it. Can you see it in the image?
Jesus said the Kingdom of God is like a precious pearl that a man sought. Having found it, he went away, sold everything, and purchased it (Matthew 11:45-46). It is this kind of seeking that describes how to obtain the Kingdom. In essence, the parable describes the heart attitude of a person who truly desires to know and reaches to the God of the Bible. Jesus Christ explains this in plain terms in Matthew 11:45-46 and dozens of other places. One of the most eloquent is just as clear when Jesus says, “seek first the kingdom of God” in Mattew 6:33. It is interesting because there is no mention of being good, getting better, becoming holy, going to church, or doing anything that smells and tastes like we can do it ourselves. That is because we miserably fail at self efforts and all of us go astray. But one thing we can do, and he says it opens the door: seek him with a whole heart. That is why the doctor, the prostitute, the tax collector, the high-and-mighty, or the low-and-dirty can do it equally well. His grace and mercy rush to come close to a person who desires God in this way. Any other self-claimed righteousness bars the door and keeps God at a distance. When we reach to him in this way, the work of birthing us again from the heart can be done by the Only One who can do it.
Are you lost, now you know how to find him. Are you a believer struggling to be better? Remember how you found Him. The same grace and mercy do the work if you have already been born again. Trust him to make the changes that you (like me) so desparately need as we find we still need change. Then we can more effectively tell of his great mercy and work to others, knowing that the credit is completely his.