Summary: There is joy in discovering the extraordinary gift of grace in the most ordinary of places.
Title: The “American Picker” Jesus
Text: Matthew 13:44-46
Thesis: There is joy in discovering the extraordinary gift of grace in the most ordinary of places.
American Pickers is a reality television series that premiered on January 18, 2010 on the History Channel. The premier episode earned 3.1 million views making it the highest rated History Channel debut since Ice Road Truckers in 2007. It continues to be popular with views who are fascinated when someone discovers and puts back into circulation a unique relic that has been laying around in obscurity in someone’s barn or basement.
The program features pickers, Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz. Mike Wolfe owns and operates Antique Archeology which is a specialty shop that sells antiques, vintage items and fold art in the little berg of Le Claire, Iowa. But Le Claire is only the base of his operations. American Pickers follows Mike and Fritz as they go off the beaten path to meet off-beat characters who have stuff stored away in basements, backrooms, back-alleys, barns and wherever. It is really quite a fascinating and educational reality series. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Pickers)
Sometimes they go with a specific thing in mind but you never know what they might unearth from under an old tarp or off the top shelf or from a long unopened box. In a recent program Mike Wolfe found the pick of a lifetime in the form of a 1937 Harley Davidson Knucklehead Motorcycle that he was able to pick up for a mere $21,000.
American Pickers are always on the hunt for the find of a lifetime.
This morning we will look at two stories about the discovery of two different treasurers… one is an unspecified treasure a man happened upon in a field and the other is a pearl of exquisite beauty and value that a pearl merchant found in his quest for pearls.
One man was not looking for a treasure and found it. The other man was looking and looking and looking for the most exquisite pearl on the planet… he was picking through collections of pearls day after day and week after week and month after month and year after year and then one day, he found it.
As these two stories suggest, I think we may think of Jesus as an advocate for “picking.”
I. People discover Christ in different ways.
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field…” Matthew 13:44
“The kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls…” Matthew 13:45
Let me begin by clarifying one thing. Some believe and teach that the man who found the treasure represents Jesus and the man who discovered the pearl is Jesus which would have the treasure in the field and the pearl represent us. In other words, Jesus is the one who discovers and seeks us out and we are the precious objects of his search.
Of course there is a way in which that makes some sense to us because “God so love the world that He sent His Son so that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 And then there is the great price paid… “But God demonstrated his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8