Not Worth A Nickel…

box of junk

“Heaven and earth shall disappear, but My words stand sure forever.”

Mark 13:31 (The Living Bible)

A few days ago I wrote about the importance of having an “eternal perspective.” One way we cultivate that perspective is by recognizing that everything around us, even our most prized possessions, is temporary.

My wife and I enjoying going to estate sales. I’m a believer in the adage, “One man’s junk is another man’s treasure.” To be fair, though, Carol still thinks that many of my “treasures” are still junk!  Even so, we enjoy visiting estate sales, especially on Saturday mornings when all of the items are half off the marked price.

Estate sales are very different from “garage” or “yard” sales. Instead of gathering all of the sale items into one area, everything in the house, garage, etc. is left in its original location. Furniture is arranged in each room. Books are on bookshelves. Clothing is hanging in closets. Kitchen items are in drawers, cabinets, and spread out on countertops. It’s very much like walking into someone’s home for a visit, except everything you see is for sale.

A few years ago, Carol noticed that I was very quiet after visiting a particular estate sale. As we drove home I explained how depressed I’d been at the sale. I was in the basement where several boxes filled with miscellaneous “treasures” were arranged on tables. Each box was marked, “all items 5 cents each.” I vividly remember looking through those boxes and thinking, “There’s nothing in here that I’d pay a nickel for.”

That’s when it hit me…

I suddenly realized that I was wandering through someone’s home, examining what had once been their most prized and treasured possessions, and I couldn’t find anything worth buying, even for a nickel. Then I thought that someday people would be wandering through my house, pawing through boxes of my “treasures” and thinking the same thing – there’s nothing here worth even a nickel.

I left that estate sale with a renewed sense of how foolish we are to invest our time and treasure in acquiring more “things” when the ultimate destiny of those “things” is to crumble into dust. Our concern needs to be for things that are eternal and will persist beyond this life. Jesus challenges us,

“Sell what you have and give alms; provide yourselves money bags which do not grow old, a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches nor moth destroys. ”

Luke 12:33 (NKJV)

I’m thankful that of all the things I have, the one “thing” that I will carry with me into eternity is God’s Word. Everything else will disappear, but His words will stand sure forever!

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3 Responses to Not Worth A Nickel…

  1. Jon Swart says:

    Thanks, Jim, for bringing a real-life personal perspective to this post.
    I always enjoy your inspired insights.

    Blessings –

  2. Greg says:

    Nice perspective brother!

    I will give you a nickel for that 1980 les Paul ;-)

  3. Della says:

    Jim, What a awakening. This is so true. Thanks for sharing.