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Updated: Jun 26

I am a private person, are you?

I tend to keep things close to the vest and not let too many people into my world. I do not know if I do this as a protective mechanism or because it is better this way.

Jesus said, ‘Do not give dogs what is sacred. Don’t throw your pearls in front of swine.” What do you think he might have meant by that? I think he meant to hold onto what is valuable and uniquely yours. He went on to say in the same statement, “If you do, they may stomp on you, run you over, and then turn on you and tear you to pieces.”

I think this means holding the keys to your life and heart very dearly and very carefully. He had just finished with another wise saying about not seeing a speck in someone else’s eye when you have a two-by-four in your own. Or do not try to supervise and control others, and then do not give anyone anything with which to control you.

I am not sure this is what motivates me to be private, but I am sure glad that Jesus has my back on this one.

What are your pearls?   What is sacred to you?  Both word pictures say something that is not worth skating over.

First, pearls are those things that at one time were irritants, and time and grace have turned into pieces of beauty. They began as what we would consider grit in our lives. Have you ever had sand in your bathing suit? It is not fun! You have had a time, place, or circumstance that was that. It seemed so irritating, but over time it changed. You embraced that failure, that disappointment, that regret. You looked to God, your only source of change, and asked him to take what you messed up and turn it into something else. Over time, you realize you have a pearl to wear.

Years later, you would never take that pearl and throw it away. You want to and will keep it as a trophy of grace. Never would you want to take that lesson learned and that experience and throw it away. Why? If the pearl casing is destroyed, someone can and will try to parade that former irritant to your detriment.

Hold onto the pearl. Value it. Keep it. Treasure it.

Then, there is the matter of the sacred in our lives. The word sacred means something important. It means, ‘This is not ordinary; it is special.’ The original language derives from a word meant to ‘protect, enclose, restrict, bind.’ Those things in our life that we associate with God’s person, work, or presence, uniquely between us and God, are sacred. We never take lightly or hold loosely those investments we know are God's investments in us. We would never take what is holy to us and throw it as a scrap to dogs. We would never allow what is sacred to be distorted, maligned, and lessened in our sight. Why? Because it is holy to us.

So, we lay claim to those valuable things in our lives that are from God. We value His direct gifts, which are sacred investments in our lives. We treasure those pearls that have become valuable to us over time because his grace and mercy have reformed the irritants of our past into the jewelry of our today. Hold on to these. Keep them close. Be private in the sense that you do not hold them loosely or with disrespect for what God has given or what God has done.

Maybe that is why I am private. I have a lot to treasure and value. I do not want it torn to pieces.

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