“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:” Matthew 6:19.
More than 2 weeks has passed since a group of six robbers stole from my room. I did not want to write during the time that the incident was still fresh and unclear because I was waiting for some more information to float up to the surface. I tried to place into written account everything I can remember and so this is not for those who are not into reading very long accounts.
I think the story began after the worship service that Sunday noon on September 1, 2013. After church, I drove the passenger vehicle called multi-cab which I always do every Sunday and bring the church people to their respective places. After the last passenger, one of my housemate texted me that our house was ransacked. I then called the church staff in the church that were right in front of me to check the situation. While driving, at the back of my mind, I am pretty sure that it was my laptop which got stolen. The rest, I can just guess. This was also a time that I saw how the Lord is testing my faith and showing to me its condition, I heard myself singing along the way, and thanking and praying to the Lord for all the grace He has poured into my life. At first, it was something extraordinary, something that I could not explain. Yet something I know that has long been in me for some time.
When we arrived, the screen door at the top of my door was torn, and all the neighborhood are inside the house. And so I immediately opened the padlock and in there, a chaotic room was revealed in our sight. Entering through the mess, I first took notice that it was my laptop that was missing, next was my external drive. The scenario was just like in the movies seeing that my belongings and those inside the boxes and cabinet drawers were scrutinized meticulously.
One thing I noticed during the first hours a robbery occurred or something similar happens, is that you cannot tell what you have really lost. It took me 7 hours to figure out what they all are. I suggest one should get an inventory or a set of digital photos so that you can keep track what things are still at hand after so much time.
I remembered that I took the opportunity to witness to my neighbors that time and I told them how these material things in the world are not to be a concern. After all, if we set our hearts in material things, and these things are stolen or broken or burned, then shall our hearts also be burned? That’s why Christ’s words are so precious when He said, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:” Matthew 6:19. The moment we place our hearts, or value, or love to this world, time will come that disaster strikes and our soul destroyed with it.
It is then that we discovered that one of the robbers with small stature went through a bamboo fence in the kitchen which they destroyed, and opened the kitchen door for his team to enter in. The backyard has no fence that time and so that’s how they have entered from the woods out there.
After lunch, we went to the police and created a blotter report, and that’s the time police men and investigators went to the house where I stay. By the way, it is also the place we call as “Student Center” where we gather students for Campus Ministry. In those times, all possibilities were considered when an untoward event occurs, but even though our minds were filled with questions, I notice one thing in myself a supernatural kind of joy and confidence that not even this kind of tragedy had shaken. An assurance of something which tells me that my true and lasting possessions is not of this world, that my treasures are not of this world, and thus something that I possess in Christ.
As 1 Peter 1:3-4 says, “…he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you,…” This is my assurance and this what got hold of me to be calm, and joyful and hopeful in the midst of everything.
During our Organization Fellowship in the afternoon, I shared to the Young People that book of Job in chapter 1 verse 20 and 21, based from my very recent personal experience. It says there “20 Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped.21 And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” For me these words are priceless and awesome that no literature or source could ever provide anywhere else in the Universe. My prayer and anticipation was that the Lord would wrought something wonderful and glorifying for Himself in this and that is what is everything. Which for sure He did. After 3 days, one of the robbers was caught and he has been worshipping with us for 2 Sundays now.
To be continued…