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Precious Commodities


By Mark Simmon

If I posed the question, “What is your most precious commodity,” how would you respond? Some may start by asking exactly how a commodity is defined. For that, I will yield to Mr. Webster. According to Merriam-Webster 2017 edition, the most applicable definitions for this discussion is as follows: “commodity: an article of commerce; something useful or valued.” Ok, now, what is your most valuable commodity? There could be many answers: money, jewels, precious metals, paintings – and the list goes on.

For me, the answer is simple, it’s “Time.” You see, we only are allotted a finite amount of time through the course of our lives. Even if we are blessed enough to live more than one hundred years, like one of our sisters here at Riverlawn, that is still a finite amount of time. To compound the significance, we are not guaranteed more time than we are living in right now. Sure, I make plans for the future just like everyone else. However, they are just that – plans, and I have no guarantee that I will be around to see them come to pass.

We also trade our time for other things in life. We spend many years in school acquiring knowledge to further our careers. We then spend many more years trading our time for money through our jobs. (By the way, I don’t consider money a commodity, but rather a tool to be used for specific purposes. Why? Because I can earn more money, but not more time. But that’s another blog!) Sometimes we get so busy trading it for more enticing and exotic things that we forget to spend it on the important things first.

I recently traded two weeks of my time in order to build both memories and greater relationships with my children and grandchildren. We started with time at the lake, tearing up the water, then returned home and capped it off with a couple days of food and fireworks. I had promised my daughters-in-law that I would spoil their kids to amusement rides, fireworks and homemade ice cream. They let me know a couple years ago that I was already quite successful. I’ve traded an enormous amount of time cultivating relationships with my children and grandchildren and they are some of the most treasured things I have. At each instance I had to choose what the most critical expenditure of my time was – spending it with them or spending it elsewhere. The only regrets I have are the times I didn’t choose to be with them when I could. You see, the important things in life, especially relationships, take that most precious commodity – time.

Ok, you knew it was coming, here’s the hook – “How’s your relationship with Jesus? Are you spending time in relationship with Him?”

The relationship with our Savior and King is the most precious thing we can have and it also takes time to cultivate. Just as I’ve watched some adults be too self-absorbed and selfish to be purposeful, involved and nurturing parents, so I’ve seen professing Christians barely find time to sit in a pew once a week yet claim a personal and intimate relationship with Jesus.

I wish them well with that approach – but I can’t see how it works.

Jesus wants our relationship to be so personal and intimate that we don’t have to stop and ask, “What Would Jesus Do?” rather we will know the answer without having to hesitate. We can spend our entire lives cultivating our relationship with Him and never find that the journey is complete or the effort was wasted.

So now I have come full circle, back to the fact that life is finite and not guaranteed and that time is the most precious commodity. How are you spending it? What are you trading it for? If time ended for you today, would you hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your king” or would you hear, “I know you not”?

What is your most precious commodity and how are you using it?

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