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A rock hound named Rob Cutshaw owns a little roadside shop outside Andrews, North Carolina. Like many in the trade, he hunts for rocks, then sells them to collectors or jewelry makers. He knows enough about rocks to decide which to pick up and sell, but he's no expert. He leaves the appraising of his rocks to other people.

As much as he enjoys the work, it doesn't always pay the bills. He occasionally moonlights, cutting wood to help put bread on the table.

While on a dig twenty years ago, Rob found a rock he described as "purdy and big." He tried unsuccessfully to sell the specimen, so he kept the rock in his closet. He guessed the blue chunk could bring as much as $500, but he would have taken less if something urgent came up like paying his power bill.

That's how close Rob came to hocking for a few hundred dollars what turned out to be the largest, most valuable sapphire ever found. The blue rock that Rob had abandoned to the darkness of a closet two decades ago--now known as "The Star of David" sapphire--weighs nearly a pound and could easily sell for $2.75 million.

We have no idea of the priceless value of what we are willing to trade.

(From a sermon by John Perry, How to become a demon's nightmare, 2/2/2011)

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