Here is my bargain of the night from last week’s local auction that Ken and I always go to…
There were two big boxes, one completely sealed, and one open just enough to see that there was some kind of plant inside. Nobody wanted them, so I thought, heck, I’ll take them. I held up my number and got them for $6.
The next afternoon, I opened the boxes, and guess what…
Inside each box, I found not one but two (four total) still wrapped, still tagged 18” tall plants. Know what’s even better? They were from Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Collection. The retail price? $30 each! I got them for $6, a savings of $114.
And the good fortune just gets better because I can’t kill them! This treasure I found can live forever!
Why am I telling you this?
Because it served as a very important lesson for me. Never, ever forget that it is what’s on the inside that counts. There is treasure to be found, but we must look past the obvious.
I could have just looked at the closed boxes that nobody wanted and passed them by, or just glanced at the fake leaf sticking out and decided that I wasn’t interested in finding out more about what was inside. I could have walked away and gone to see what was being sold on the other side of the room. I could have let another person take a chance at what was inside those boxes. Instead, I took the chance, not knowing what I would find, and I found a treasure.
That’s so often the case with many things in life, especially people. That quiet, shy girl who barely offers a smile as you pass her by might end up being the best friend you ever had. That thing you passed up because you couldn’t see all of the promise within it could be just the thing you need in life. That trip you almost passed up because you weren’t sure it was worth it might be the one that changed your life and filled the missing places in your heart.
It’s the old, don’t judge a book by it’s cover.
Abraham was an old man, and Sarah was barren, yet they went on to be the predecessors and life-givers of a great nation. Moses was born into slavery but led his people from bondage. Jospeh was a dreamer who sat in prison, but he built Egypt into an empire during a time of famine. Ruth was an orphan, a widow, and childless, yet she became the great-grandmother of a king. Jesus was born in a cave surrounded by animals, but He is the King.
Will these plants change my life? Not in and of themselves. But they are a great and powerful reminder that we often look past things and people of great worth just because they aren’t “packaged” the way we expect them to be or because their true value is hidden from view. It’s not always in our nature to explore, to dig deeper, to uncover the hidden, but we are told, “seek, and ye shall find” (Matthew 7:7). We may not always know what we are seeking, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t there to be found.
Today, look beyond the obvious, see past the exterior, and take a chance on the hidden. You never know what treasure awaits.
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Amy Schisler is an award-winning author of both children’s books and sweet, faith-filled romance novels for readers of all ages. She lives with her husband and three daughters on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Her books, Picture Me, Whispering Vines, and Island of Miracles are all recipients of Illumination Awards, placing them among the top inspirational fiction books of 2015, 2016, and 2017. Whispering Vines was awarded the 2017 LYRA Award for the best romance of 2016. Island of Miracles has outsold all of Amy’s other books worldwide and ranked as high as 600 on Amazon. Her follow up, Island of Promise is a reader favorite. Amy’s children’s book is The Greatest Gift. The suspense novel, Summer’s Squall, and all of Amy’s books, can be found online and in stores. Her latest novel, Island of Promise, was recently awarded First Prize by the Oklahoma Romance Writer’s Association as the best Inspirational Romance of 2018 and was awarded a Gold Medal in the Independent Publisher Book Awards 2019 for Inspirational Fiction. It is the 2019 winner for Best Inspirational Fiction in the RWA Golden Quill Contest, Best Romance in the American Book Awards, and a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award of Fiction. Amy’s 2019 work, The Devil’s Fortune, a finalist in the Writer’s Digest Self-Publishing Awards and winner of an Illumination Award, is based, in part, on Amy’s family history. The third book of Amy’s Chincoteague Island Trilogy, Island of Hope, was released in August of 2019.
Amy’s books: Crabbing With Granddad (2013), A Place to Call Home (2014), Picture Me (2015), Whispering Vines (2016), Island of Miracles (2017), Stations of the Cross Meditations for Moms (2017), The Greatest Gift (2017), Summer’s Squall (2017), Island of Promise (2018), The Devil’s Fortune (2019), Island of Hope (2019), A Devotional Alphabet (2019), Desert Fire, Mountain Rain(2020).