As a young boy, my son had a treasure box. In it he kept some baseball cards, a toy car my Daddy had given him, an arrowhead, some Mexican coins and some rocks. I guess it must be a little boy thing to have rocks in your treasure box. He still has that box and the rocks are still there. I still wonder why he chose to put rocks in his treasure box. The answer most likely is: they are special and treasured to him and it's his box, not mine.
That lesson was hard learned and my children may say that I'm still in the process of learning it: their lives are their lives, not mine, and they decide what they will put into them. As a parent, that is difficult to do sometimes, particularly as your children grow and assert their independence and you know their choices are unwise and potentially dangerous. When our children are infants, toddlers and school age, we make conscious decisions concerning what foods our children eat, what doctor will attend to their medical needs, what school (public, private, home school) they will attend and on the list goes. But, at some point, our children start choosing some of those things for themselves and those choices include rocks instead of diamonds and rubies.
Now that I am a Mimi (that's a grandmother) to four grandsons, I see more clearly the importance of guiding the boys to make wise choices; to choose the better over the good, to choose more diamonds than rocks, to listen instead of always talking, to be still instead of always being in motion. I knew that as a mother but somehow it's different with the grandchildren. I guess because I experienced the consequences of our childrens' decisions with them, I can see down the road where picking up a rock instead of a diamond can be disasterous.
However, on the other hand, it might not hurt to have a rock in your treasure box to pull out when things get tough. I know that our son has some street-wise, rock-kind-of-stuff in his life experiences that will help guide his own son one day. Based on the rocks in his own treasure box, he will be able to steer his son in another direction.
Rocks can serve a purpose in our treasure box of life. Rocks can be used to build a solid foundation, a wall of protection. Rocks can also be smoothed away of their rough edges. We had friend at church who was a an amateur gemologist and he had a machine that tumbled rocks and made them smooth. He would take the smooth rocks and make necklaces and other jewelry items out of what started as rough, dull, ugly rocks.
How like God to use the rock tumbler of life to smooth away the ugliness, the bumps and dull places to make something beautiful and useful in His Kingdom. We can find many examples in the Bible of the rough-rock characters that were used mightily by God to fulfill His purpose. He took Moses and his stuttering tongue to speak deliverance for the children of Israel. He took King David and his infidelity and treachery to ultimately be a man after God's own heart. He used impulsive Peter and built his church on his faith. He used a prostitute with a bottle of expensive perfume to teach us to give what we have to God's purposes and it will be used.
Rocks in the box. What treasures do I have in my box that need to feel the tumble of God's gentle hand? How about you? Do you have some rocks you are holding in a clenched fist, hanging on to them for dear life, unwilling to let God smooth them away and make something beautiful? My prayer is that your fingers will relax as you begin the journey of trusting God with all that's in your treasure box, both diamonds and rocks.