It must have been around 40 years ago when this incident happened. Julie told me that I could write about what had happened because her mom would have had a good laugh abut it.
We were all at the beach in Dunedin, Florida: that's Julie and I, our kids, Julie's sister and brother-in-law and their kids, and Julie's mom and dad. They were down in Florida looking to buy a place close to all of us and since we had some extra time, decided to have a day of fun, sun and the Gulf of Mexico. After a couple of hours walking the beach, trying to catch some fish and cleaning the sand out of the hot dogs to make them a bit more tasty, we started picking up all our stuff and head for home.
Mrs. Wright began to look around and started to act very nervous. I asked, "What's the problem Baba? Did you forget your shoes or something?"
She whispered,"I can't find my purse!"
"Where'd you put it?"
"Well, I buried it in the sand."
We had walked at least a mile down the beach and then back to the place where all of us had put our towels, shoes and ice chest, but let me tell you, most of the dunes look pretty much the same. After 30 minutes, Mr. Wright said, "Dorothy, you don't have a driver's license or credit cards. I'll get you a new purse before we leave.
"George, you don't understand. The money's in my purse."
I thought Mr. Wright was about to have a heart attack! Not trusting a cashier's check or a lock box at the bank, Mrs. Wright had put the money they had received from the sale of their house in her purse for safe keeping. Just to be extra careful, she had then buried the purse.
Just use your imaginations. Here is your life savings. You have buried it in some unknown, unidentifiable and unmarked pile of sand.
I have a pretty good passage of Scripture for this event. I had enough common sense not to use it back then, but I'll quote it now with a few alterations.
"Do not bury your treasure in the sand where tide and erosion can wash it away. Put it in the right place, for where your treasure is, there will be your heart also." Loosely translated from Matthew 6:19.
The whole family started digging like pirates on a quest for a chest full of booty. We found it just as the sun was setting, and no one said a word all the way home.
"Aargh! Where's your treasure, bucko? Is your wealth measured by trinkets, investments or securities? Is your sea chest crammed full of power, achievements or awards? Most importantly, Lubber, did you make a map to help you find your loot?" And the big question is, "Will all this stuff protect you, keep you safe and make what life you have left worth living?"
For a quick reference, the passage speaks of those who might break in and steal your hidden wealth. Since most all the homes in the time of Jesus were built of clay, the better translation is, "...might dig in and steal..." Sort of fits my story, doesn't it?
Folks, our treasure is in heaven and the One who holds the key that will open the gates and give to us our heart's desires is Jesus the Christ. We have no map to guide us, no "X" that marks the spot, no secret clues known only to us.
Wasn't it Thomas who asked, "How can we know the way?"
Was it not Jesus who answered that question which is ours as well?
"I am the way!"