Our children’s church pays kids in “jewels.” They look like little dollar bills in denominations of 50, 100, 500, 1000, etc. They can earn this Christian currency from any number of good deeds. Attendance, bringing your Bible, knowing your memory verse, or winning a game can earn play money riches.
Twice a month they gather at the “Jewel Store” and choose from dozens of fabulous prizes. They can purchase anything from computer games to sports equipment. Smaller items like pencils and stickers are a few hundred jewels, while big ticket items can go as high as 20,000.
Last week eight-year-old Owen went to the store, having saved over 10,000 jewels! This qualified him for just about anything he wanted. He waited patiently in the mass of kids who were swarming the store like ants on a grape. Finally, it was his turn. “How many jewels ya got?” the teen worker asked. “10,000!” he proudly replied. “Okay! Anything from the second shelf on down.”
Light Bright? No thanks. Soccer ball? Not his thing. Slime machine? Already got it.
He stood. He mused. He shopped. He weighed his options. The crowd started to thin. Anything at all? How about this model plane? Headphones? Amazing Live Sea Monkeys! (I actually thought that sounded pretty good.)
Wow. I thought one of those would surely win the day. Soon there was nobody left at the booth but us. The workers were so patient. He continued to waffle. I said, “Owen. You’ve got to choose something. Anything. Please.”
Finally, a custodian came by with his broom, ready to close. He reached behind the counter and pulled out a $50 Walmart gift card. “Here ya go.”
Blessed is the man who remains steadfast!