Crown Full of Jewels: Where is Your Treasure?

(3 minute read)

A favorite memory of mine that has had a continuing impact on my life is from my college years. I went to a university where a lot of my family had gone. When I was there, my father, aunts, and uncles would come for the homecoming football game and we would tailgate before the game. It was always a lot of fun, even though it was usually pretty cold!

One year we had tickets right next to the band. One of my uncles, a very exuberant man with a big heart, had, shall we say, overindulged a bit in the tailgating before the game. He proceeded to heckle the band. Right after halftime, the person in front of my aunt turned around and said to her, “How can you put up with this?”

It was funny at the time, but through the years, I’ve found myself pondering this statement. There is truth in it. When we live in a family, we make sacrifices. Those sacrifices are made out of love. That love and sacrifice is made possible by the love and sacrifice of Jesus. His example of self-giving love helps us live in a self-giving manner as wives and husbands, mothers and fathers, sons and daughters.

The reward of a crown by God’s saving grace is mentioned both in the Old Testament and the New Testament.

The prophets tell us: “You shall be a glorious crown in the hand of the LORD, a royal diadem in the hand of your God” (Is 62:3). “And the LORD their God will save them: the people, like a flock on that day; For like gemstones of a crown, they will shine on the land” (Zech 9:16).

St. Paul says: “I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. From now on the crown of righteousness awaits me, which the Lord, the just judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me, but to all who have longed for his appearance” (2Tim: 4: 7-8). James and Peter in their letters and John in Revelation mention crowns as a heavenly reward. (James 1:12; 1Peter 5:4; Rev 2:10 & 4:10).

What does this mean for me? Well, when I’m being particularly annoying and my husband says, under his breath, “Crown full of jewels,” he’s not wrong! If I respond to that reminder with humility and an apology, my crown fills up. (Many times, though, I don’t respond so well.) When I, as a daughter, a mother, a sister, a wife, a child of God, give of myself in imitation of my Savior, I am increasing my capacity for love and the number of jewels in my crown in heaven.

Today, I came across this quote from St. Teresa of Avila, “…there is no structure so beautiful as a soul filled with virtues and the more perfect these virtues are, the more brilliantly do the jewels shine.” I love when God does that! He places a thought: “crown full of jewels” in my head, I start writing about it, and then, BAM! I get a perfect quote emphasizing what He wants me to hear right now—“Grow in virtue, Kathy.”

Written by Katherine DeVet


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