I was inspired today by the sermon given by Reverend Jerry Snavely at Glad Tidings Assembly of God, standing in for their Pastor who is on vacation. The title of his sermon was Heaven’s Market. Does Heaven have something to sell? Read what Jesus said to the church in Laodicea, in Revelation 3:14-22.
BUY FROM ME
- Gold refined in fire | faith
- White clothes |righteousness
- Salve for your eyes | spiritual vision
“Increase our faith!” the apostles asked the Lord. (Luke 17:5)
Jesus was often limited due to the lack of faith. He works miracles according to our faith.
And he did not do many mighty works there, because of their unbelief. Matthew 13:58 ESV
TO RECEIVE FROM GOD
- ASK (Matthew 7:7,8)
- ASK according to God’s will (1 John 5:14,15)
- ASK in faith (James 1:6)
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. Romans 10:17
We cannot survive in this world without money. For food and shelter, for clothing, for education, for fun, for… whatever, we need money!
Most of the time I use “plastic,” that is, my credit card. For about 20 years I’ve had a card that earns me miles. I have earned many trips overseas, that I have used myself and shared with family members. Thanks to that card I can travel to Sweden to see my father. The most I hold in my hand are 20 dollar bills. The other day I felt rich. For a few moments I had one hundred dollars in my hand.
Today, during the sermon, I held the largest bill ever. Brother Snavely lent it to me so I could photograph it. Have you ever had 5 billion dollars in your hand? This is it!
Brother Snavely quickly blew our bubble! That money from Zimbabwe could probably buy us a candy bar! It was still fun and exciting to hold such an amount in my hand.
Let me tell you about “big” money when I worked in Bolivia. During my years there (1984-1988) I was in charge of the publishing ministry of the Swedish Mission—Editorial El Evangelista.
We did not yet have any modern computer equipment. All the layout for the publishing was done by hand. It was measuring, cutting and pasting. Look at the size of the letters you’re reading here. I was an expert in doing correction jobs, cutting and pasting a little letter here and another there. I used tweezers to pick up the letters, put a tiny drop of glue on and then do the pasting. What a tedious job! How I enjoyed it!
One of our publications was the magazine VOCERO CRISTIANO. We had a printing press but we used to outsource the printing of this one. The point I’m getting to now has to do with money. At the time there was big inflation going on in Bolivia. Very quickly the currency needed jumped to the millions.
The money was printed on bad quality paper so it wore out quite quickly. Here is a million that I saved as a souvenir. I even have more souvenirs. How about ten million?
Let me get back to the magazine. When we were going to print this particular number, the inflation was out of control. On the picture you can see our editor Leonardo Alderete (right), our printer guy (left) and one of the girl helpers. They are folding and paging together the magazine.
I’m getting to the money part! How would you feel if you had to carry big boxes of money to pay for a print job? That’s what we had to do! The girl on the picture and another girl had to go to the print-shop and sit an entire morning counting up the money it cost us to pay for the printing! We carried boxes of money to pay for that job.
It was a sorry, sorry time. Just think about having enough to survive on for a few days and then waking up in the morning and your money was not even worth the paper it was printed on. We received our pay in dollars so we were in good shape, but for our dear Bolivian friends it was miserable. People tried to exchange whatever they could into dollars.
If you were going to do some shopping in the morning, you exchanged just enough for that shopping trip. If you had an errand for the afternoon, you waited to exchange money because the currency rate could change drastically from morning to afternoon.
This is the kind of money we handled in those days. We were all millionaires!
All of this came to mind as I was thinking about the sermon of this morning, about Heaven’s Market. “Faith is Heaven’s Money”, brother Snavely repeated time and again. That’s the order God has established.
And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. Hebrews 11:6 ESV
We exercised a lot of faith in those “millionaire days,” especially my dear Bolivian friends. I have many fond memories from my years in Bolivia. Before moving there, our girls studied at the Swedish School in Cochabamba and had to travel back and forth between Peru and Bolivia. The political situation was heated and we never knew if they would be able to cross the border next time needed. That will be a story for another time.
The currency on earth can fluctuate. We could easily be billionaires if we lived in Zimbabwe… The important thing is Heaven’s Currency.
Have Faith in God!