The Lord said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites to bring me an offering. You are to receive the offering for me from everyone whose heart prompts them to give. These are the offerings you are to receive from them: gold, silver and bronze; blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen; goat hair; ram skins dyed red and another type of durable leather; acacia wood; olive oil for the light; spices for the anointing oil and for the fragrant incense; and onyx stones and other gems to be mounted on the ephod and breastpiece. (Exodus 25:1-7)
You see, this weekend is our son’s birthday and we’re having a few of his friends over to celebrate, and Marti, Queen of Events, wants to organize an old fashioned team treasure hunt in the neighborhood with a Grand Prize for the winners. And right now, those of you who know about our family are thinking Chandler. Well no, Chandler’s birthday is in September, this is our firstborn, Christopher and he’s going to be 35! Marti says that’s impossible because that would make her 4 years old when she had him, but I just tell her to shake it off as new math.
So Marti is going to send a bunch of thirtysomethings dressed as pirates (the party theme) off into the neighborhood looking for little trinkets to turn into treasures. (We’ve got to try and keep this a secret because if they know about this ahead of time they will have time to think of all the reasons they don’t want to do this. Better to send them off before they have a chance to realize how silly they are.)
Marti’s idea was to let you all in on this so I can have some help thinking of treasures to have them look for. So now you see why this morning’s reading was the kick in the butt I needed to get me to write about this. If God could send his children off into the neighborhood seeking things like yarn, goat hair, spices, olive oil and durable leather, certainly I could send our guests off looking for similar trinkets that become treasures to us.
If you haven’t guessed yet, where you can help me is by coming up with ideas for “treasures.” Marti would like them to be along the lines of our pirate theme, 35 years, or Christopher’s work as a policeman with the Harbor Division of the LAPD. These have to be things that are of little or no value to the neighborhood people so as to be easily parted with. An example would be a badge which could be an old campaign button or some kind of promotional Sea World button nestled deep in that second drawer in the kitchen where we all keep everything we don’t need. Also, I’m open to ideas for a Grand Prize that will motivate everyone to want to do this even if they don’t.
Here’s where all this silliness comes down to something very important for each one of us. You will remember the following quote attributed to Mark Twain from yesterday’s Catch: “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” So today you’re going to help me celebrate the first birthday of my son by helping me come up with a list of trinkets we can turn into treasures, while we all can celebrate the second one, because that is the day you realize that you are loved, infinitely and completely, by God. For me that day repeats itself often, as I am prone to forget. And should you ever feel like a trinket, remember, to God you will always be His treasure. So in that last regard, Happy Second Birthday to us all!