“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field.  When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.”  (Matthew 13:44)

Matthew 13:44 is the verse that drives everything we do as a ministry.  It is a powerful verse that shows exactly what happens to a seeking heart when it has finally found what it has been looking for.  All hearts are looking to be satisfied. That’s why we cling to money, possessions, friends, and many other shallow “treasures.” Something occurs, though, when a seeking heart finds the greatest Treasure hidden in the field.  Suddenly, all the other “treasures” that have been found start to look insignificant.  What causes that?  Joy.  Finding God creates joy.  Joy is exactly what your heart is desperate for.

I want to break this verse down into two short writings.  In today’s writing, we will look at the joy that springs forth when we come to know God for who He is.  In the next writing, we will look at the fruit of what this joy creates in us.  Both are powerful realities that are first rooted in God.  He is the greatest Treasure that you could possibly find.  When you do find Him, your desperate soul will suddenly let up and find its contentment.  It will stop hopping from one thing to the next, hoping to finally be fulfilled. It will finally find its joy.

Joy is a powerful thing.  It is unlike happiness.  Happiness can be swayed by the ups and downs of this life.  We can feel happy for a moment, but then fall into sadness with the next moment.  Joy, however, is unshakeable.  Joy is a contentment that cannot be swayed, regardless of what circumstances come our way.  Unlike happiness, joy sets our hearts at ease in the midst of ups or downs.  Joy is what your soul is searching for.  It is only found in God.

The man in Matthew 13:44 was stuck in a search of trying to find something to satisfy.  Does that sound like something you can relate to?  We try new thing after new thing, just hoping and praying that it will somehow make us feel more content.  The search, however, does not end in any new, worldly “treasure.”  The search will only end in God, who is the greatest Treasure.  The man in Matthew 13:44 knew this once he found Him.

Something happened inside of the man when he discovered God to be his Treasure.  Yes, he sold everything he had.  We will focus on that in the next writing, but for now I want to look at his posture as he sold it all.  There was no hesitation or sadness as he did it.  There was no regret as his grip on this world began to fade.  Instead, he did it in his joy.  Joy had set his heart free.  It became clear that he was not in need of something to give him a shot of happiness.  No, it was clear that he was in need of his soul being satisfied by the God who creates joy.

Joy radically changed everything about this man.  The same can be true for you.  The world will tell you to do things that make you happy.  It will sell you the lie that we should buy and do things that give us a quick shot of superficial happiness.  That is great, until the waves of this life come and crush that momentary feeling, leaving a wake of sadness on your shore. Joy is better. God is greater.  You don’t need to do things that make you happy.  You need to cling to the Treasure that creates your joy.  He is all that will satisfy.  He remains secure in the midst of waves.  Your search for more only ends in Him.  God creates joy.  As we will see in the next writing, joy changes everything.

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