What makes something precious to you? When and how do you ascribe value to it?
I grew up in North Texas in what was once a small college town. Denton, at the time, had about 31,000 residents and two universities. It possessed a wonderful atmosphere of discovery that continues to shape my life to this day.
Denton is located about 35 miles northwest of Dallas and about 30 miles north of Ft. Worth, Texas. My dad was raised in Ft. Worth and hated Dallas. I’m not sure why, but I think it was just because he was raised in Ft. Worth and that’s how some Ft. Worth people feel about Dallas. He tried to disciple me in this way but I was pretty ambivalent about it. I loved the Dallas Cowboys, but of course back then they were in Irving, Texas. I don’t think I ever hated Dallas; I just didn’t care one way or the other. I paid little attention to what was happening in Dallas. I avoided going through it when I could.
Now, I’m looking for excuses to go through Dallas, Texas. I may even go out of my way to go through Dallas. My ears “perk up” when I hear the word Dallas or my eyes quickly focus when I see the word Dallas. Now I’m paying attention to Dallas. Now, Dallas matters. Why?
My baby girl and her husband just moved to Dallas. This changes everything.
We’ve been blessed to have our seven grown children and all our grandchildren live within 30 minutes of my recliner. Dallas is not within 30 minutes of my recliner. Dallas has been made more precious to me by my daughter’s presence.
What would happen if I thought of Jesus in this way?
- If I recognized Jesus’ presence in my neighborhood, would my neighbors become more precious to me?
- If I knew Jesus was in another person’s life would they be precious to me even though we had known and recognized theological differences?
- If I knew Jesus was present in my workplace would it change the way I saw my work and those with whom I work?
- If I recognized Jesus’ presence when I visited with other believers, would it change how we visited? Would it change how I received what they were sharing?
- If I believe Jesus is as present in my prayer closet or my living room as he is in our church service (assuming I believe he is present in our church service) would this change how I see prayer or how I relate to others in my living room?
For me, the presence of Jesus changes everything. His presence ascribes value to people, place and time. Jesus makes it precious. Now let’s see…where are you Jesus….?