|Theme:||The Kingdom of heaven, what is it worth? Proper 12 (17) Year A|
|Object:||A package of cookies or another item of your choosing. I used Oreo cookies.|
|Scripture:||“Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls. 46 When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it! Matthew 13:45-46 [NIV]|
There is a television show called "The Price Is Right." Have you ever seen it? It has been on television for more than fifty years! The contestants on the show are shown an item and then they try to guess how much the item costs. The one who guesses closest to the actual price without going over wins the prize. I thought it would be fun to play "The Price Is Right." I brought a package of cookies. Oreo cookies! Yum, yum! On the back of the package there is a tag with the price of the cookies. We will see how close you can come to guessing the price without going over the correct price.
If you think that the price of this package of cookies is MORE than $4.00, raise your hand. No, if you raised your hand, you are out of the game because these cookies do not cost more than $4.00.
If you think the price of this package of cookies is LESS than $2.00, raise your hand. If you raised your hand, you are out of the game because these cookies cost more than $2.00.
If you think the price of these cookies is MORE than $3.00, raise your hand. If you raised your hand, you are still in the game. This package of cookies does cost more than $3.00.
Next, I am going to call out a price, If I call out the price that you think is the right price of the cookies, raise your hand.
$3.39 - No, you're out of the game.
$3.49 - No, you're out of the game.
$3.59 - No! You're out!
$3.69 - Yes! These cookies cost $3.69. If your hand is up, you are a winner! You have won the cookies, but I am sure that you will want to share them with the other children when our Bible story is over.
These cookies are good, but $3.69 is a lot of money for a package of cookies, isn't it? Are they worth it? Perhaps there is another package of cookies that would be just as good for less money. Every day, we have to make choices about the value of things. We ask ourselves, "How much am I willing to pay?"
Jesus once told a story about a man who found a treasure which someone had hidden in a field. He was so happy that he immediately went and sold everything he had and bought the field so that the treasure would be his. (Matthew 13:44)
Jesus told about another man who went in search of fine pearls. When he found a pearl that he thought was the very best, he sold everything that he had so that he could buy the pearl. (Matthew 13:45-46)
These men both found something that they thought was worth giving everything they owned so that they could have it. Do you know what this thing was that Jesus was talking about? He wasn't talking about buried treasure or beautiful pearls, he was talking about the kingdom of heaven. The kingdom of heaven is the greatest treasure one could ever desire. It is more precious than silver, gold, or jewels. That is why Jesus calls us to give up all that we have and follow him. Is that too great a price? I don't think so. In fact, I would say, "The Price Is Right!"
Father, nothing we have can compare to life in the kingdom of heaven. Amen.
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