Real Treasures



“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” – Jesus, as quoted in Matthew 6:21 KJV

 I’m in the process of decluttering my house. Choosing what to pitch, what to donate, and what to keep is agonizing. The frugal in me whispers, “What if you need it someday?” while the ruthless in me shouts, “Haven’t used it in a year? Pitch it!”

I need to listen to Ruth-Less.

But as I go through closets, drawers, cupboards, boxes, and bins, nearly every item comes with a memory attached.

Oct. 20, 1973 – me on the night Dean and I announced our engagement

Like the shawl I pulled out of the cedar closet. I’ll never wear it again. I just don’t like fooling with clothing that won’t stay in place on its own. So into the “donate” pile it went.

Then I remembered: it was the shawl I wore with the dress I had on when DH and I got engaged. (There’s a story there, too, but I’ll tell you another time.) So out of the pile it came. Then Ruth-Less cleared her throat.

A friend told me if an item brings you joy, keep it. Well, the shawl itself didn’t bring joy, but the memory did. And I don’t need the shawl to remember that night. It’s firmly planted in my mind and heart.

Then there’s the tube of chocolate-flavored lip balm I keep in a drawer of my workstation. The balm is all gone, but the memory attached to it isn’t. You see, it was the inspiration for the first novel I wrote, Before I Die (retitled Mid-LOVE Crisis).

You see, DH and I were returning home from a Christmas party, for which I’d worked hard to look and smell good – in vain because no compliment was given all night by the man I’d wanted to impress. My lips felt dry, so I applied the balm. DH sniffed and asked, “Did you just open something?”

“Why?” was my cautious response.

“Because I smell brake fluid.”

How romantic!

“Before I die I want to fall in love again,” I thought, miserably gazing at the snowflakes swirling outside the passenger window.

That was 26 years ago. I’ve learned true romance – the real treasure – is not in words but in actions. Like getting up a 5 a.m. Monday through Friday, putting in an 11-hour day, then coming home to maintaining a house, eventually getting to the items on the honey-do list, and placing a stone, at my request, where he buried my precious kitty Rascal.

It’s stopping on the way home from work and picking a bouquet of tiger lilies or daffodils to surprise me. It’s encouraging me and freeing up my time so I can pursue my dream of writing. It’s supporting me in my decisions. It’s believing in me even when I don’t.

This blog didn’t turn out the way I planned. I began writing about traditions. Somehow, “traditions” led to “treasures,” and “treasures” led to DH – a treasure for a lifetime.

Good timing, too. Because today is his birthday. And I got the gift.

What are some of the treasures of your heart?

Thank you, Lord, for helping me to see clearly the real treasures in my life. Amen.

Read and meditate on Matthew 6:19–34

© 2018 Michele Huey. All rights reserved.

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