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What one thing?

We used to play this little game when we were kids. We'd all lay around under the shade of a big tree, one foot crossed over the other, some of us half sitting, half reclining. We'd pitch the question, "If your house was on fire right now, what one thing would you take with you?" That may not seem like a very significant question, but we'd hold each other to just 'one thing', because inevitably we'd have a hard choice between saving our dolls, cars, favorite books, or even our cutest dresses. Before long we'd be spouting off a list of things we would have to 'rescue' from the fire instead of just ONE THING. The instructions weren't hard - the lessons they taught were!

I have found as much joy in following Your Law as one finds in much riches. (Psalm 119:14)

That simple game may not have seemed all that significant at the time, but it actually revealed where our heart was at that moment. Some would choose to save their baseball card collection, while others would collect up as many of their 'favorite' things, even if it meant delaying their safe exit from the fire in the end. Most of my friends also had pets, so we'd hear that they'd save Herman the hamster from his cage, or snatch up the goldfish bowl so none of their 'finned friends' would boil to death. No one considered there would be the potential of needing to rescue one another. None of us ever took thought about 'things' outside of our immediate 'ownership' - if it was 'ours', we'd figure out a way to save it.

"Things" are just that - they are things. They aren't going to last forever - just in case you didn't know they all will fail at some point in time. Not one time did you ever hear one of us say we'd snatch up our baby sister or brother, drag mom or dad to safety, or even grab something like the family photo album. Why? Those "things" weren't really in the forefront of our minds as much as our toys or pets were. Whatever it is that consumes your focus the most is usually what you will fight to save in the end. You will want to preserve it at all cost. Wouldn't it be wonderful if what we thought about first was goodness and grace? If that were the case, we'd do everything in our power to ensure both were preserved no matter what it took to keep them alive around us!

Do we consider God's Word to be like 'riches' in our lives? If the answer to this one is 'no', maybe we need a little refresher time in his Word. When we allow his Word to get into us, we find it hard to be parted from it. We want to not only see it 'available' in our lives, but we want to ensure it will always be "preserved" in our lives. Something that is preserved is kept alive - it lasts to keep you safe and away from harm. We would do everything in our power to ensure we are never without this protection and power in our lives. Maybe the one thing we need to be asking ourselves today is the simple question we asked as kids under that tree. What one thing would you take with you if your house was on fire? It wouldn't need to be your Bible if your Bible got inside your mind just a little bit more! Just sayin!


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