Wednesday, April 1, 2020

From the Ashes

By David A. Sargent

    One week ago, Brett Petrillo shared some stats from an article on CNN regarding the devastation of the fires that have been raging in California: “California's forests have been severely devastated by the forest fires lately.  In a week's time, they have scorched nearly 160,000 acres and displaced 190,000 people. As we speak, 5,700 firefighters are diligently working to contain the damage. Unfortunately, dry air and strong winds are making this especially difficult.”
    But, as Petrillo also observed, a tender story has arisen out of the ashes: “Don and Julie Myers are one of the many families who have lost their home to the fires. After the fire passed, it left little but ash and rubble behind. The Myers returned home to see what could be salvaged. Incredibly, as they sifted through the ash, a glimmering object stood out. It was his wife's long-lost original wedding ring! Seizing the moment, Don brought the ring over to his wife, dropped to one knee and proposed to her all over again (from”
    “It's easy to let difficulty bring us down,” writes Petrillo. “It takes someone truly special to look past the ashes and see what's valuable and important. For the Myers, their house was lost but their marriage wasn't. They still had each other. They still had a home no matter where their next house will be.”
    Life has its hardships. Jesus said, “In the world, you will have tribulation” (John 16:33). “It's hard to know what the future holds for us,” says Petrillo. “Disease. Cancer. Financial difficulty. Loss of a job. Marriage problems. Family problems. Death.” But here is his challenge: “When the fires of tribulation set our world ablaze, let's try to keep in mind what's truly important.”
    So what is truly important?
    It’s people, not possessions, that have the greatest value in our lives (see Matthew 22:37-39).
    In the world, we will have tribulation, but in Jesus we can have peace, because He has overcome the world (John 16:33).
    For Christians, “our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory” (2 Corinthians 4:17).
    For the child of God, “we know that if our earthly house, this tent [our physical body], is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (2 Corinthians 5:1).
    Jesus died on the cross for our sins so that we might have the wonderful treasures of salvation and eternal life. God will grant these eternal, spiritual treasures to those who place their faith and trust in Jesus (Acts 16:30-31), turn from their sins in repentance (Acts 17:30-31), confess Jesus before men (Romans 10:9-
10), and are baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38). He will continue to cleanse from sin those who continue to walk in the light of His Word (1 John 1:7).
    Even in the ashes – and one day that’s all this world will be (2 Peter 3:10) – there are treasures still.  These treasures are found in Christ.
    Won’t YOU trust and obey Jesus so that you can enjoy the greater, spiritual, and eternal blessings that God desires for you?

- David A. Sargent, minister for the Church of Christ at Creekwood in Mobile, Alabama, is also the editor of an electronic devotional entitled "Living Water."  To learn more about this excellent resource contact David via their website:

* From Brett Petrillo, “Treasure in the Ashes,” in Daily Bread (12/8/17), an e-mail ministry of the Bear Valley Church of Christ in Denver, CO.

No comments:

Post a Comment