A story is told of a man who had a very rich piece of land. The land’s value was attributed to the vast array of minerals found during one digging experience. There was still more. The owner of the land decided to build on the land so that he and his children and his children’s children could grow and dwell in this land that was passed down to him from his father. Many tried to convince the man to sell the land but he was intransigent. He would not sell the piece of land for anything.

One very rich merchant approached the owner one bright afternoon and proposed to buy the land for twice its value. The owner was shocked that the man did actually have the cash in hand and was willing to pay upfront. He rejected the merchant’s offer. The merchant went home and returned with three times the amount of money for the piece of land. The owner was tempted but he was not coerced. He remained adamant. He would not sell the valuable piece of land that was passed to him from his father. The merchant went for a long time and came back a third time with four times the amount of money that valued the piece of land. The owner of the land was very tempted. The money was enough to buy him land ten times the size of his own and still have too much to spare. He did not give in to the offer. The merchant did not seem disappointed by the owner’s refusal. However, he made another offer.

At the corner of the perimeter of the land, there stood a tree.  The merchant made a new offer to the owner. He offered to buy the tree at the corner for the same four times amount of money he had brought. The owner was flummoxed! Four times the amount of the land for that one silly tree at the corner was a super deal. He consented. He gave the merchant a document granting him ownership of the tree and received the cash in full.

That merchant fenced the tree he had bought and proceeded to kill an animal in the nearby jungle. He took the carcass of the animal and he hung it on the tree. In a few days the carcass began to stink. The owner of the land clearly perturbed by the smell, confronted the merchant and demanded that he remove the dead animal. But the merchant was equally intransigent as the owner was at the beginning. He had bought the tree, he had the legal documentation and he could do whatever he wanted with it. The owner went back to his house knowing that in no time, the animal would rot away and the smell would no longer be a bother. But alas! The merchant hung another animal and another and another. Soon tons of carcasses hung on the tree and the area became a health hazard. The owner could no longer live on the land. He fled and the merchant took over the land he always wanted.

This is the revelation. Let him who has ears listen. The owner of the land is you, the believer in Christ Jesus. The land is your life. The merchant is the devil and the systems of the world. The tree and all that is in the land are parts and aspects of your life. The devil may offer a good deal for your life but you’re no fool. You know the value of the land your Father passed to you. You will not give in no matter the cost. After trying so hard (for he is an ambitious fellow) all he may ask is for that one tree that looks so insignificant in your land. Blinded by the thrill, you may surrender it. The tree may be that television series that you watch yet you know the language and crude jokes are un-Christ-like. The tree may be what you and your boyfriend do with your bodies in the dark as long as no one gets pregnant. The tree may be that music you listen too that’s just a bit sensual but you deem harmless. The tree may be that movie with that erotic scene that you shouldn’t be watching even if you’re above the age rating. The tree could be that extra hour of sleep you refuse to commit to doing your quiet time in the morning or that “friend” who constantly drags you into that compromising situation. The tree may be the hours you spend on the Internet “killing time” or the little gossips in life that are so entertaining or the things that you do in your secret life that you deem unimportant. That tree is the insignificant compromise that we think can harm no one. Well, it’s all a matter of time and you begin to slowly fade. The land that your father handed you has so much potential to produce great things but the tree you sold to the merchant is keeping you busy trying to fight stinks in your life instead of growing and being productive. It depends on how dead we are to our self and alive in Christ for us to keep the whole land intact.

Is Jesus Lord 100%? You see, Jesus Christ is present in all believers. He is prominent in some believers but he is only pre-eminent in few. He is either Lord of all or he isn’t Lord at all. Dedicate all your time, media, relationships, entertainment, leisure, work and all that’s of you to him. At the end, I assure you there will be a harvest of faithfulness, both here on earth and in the after.