In honor of the Academy Awards, the Hollywood Reporter some time ago revealed the surprising places stars store their statues after finally winning them. One star stores his in the refrigerator, another in the bottom of a closet gathering dust. Tom Hanks’ two best actor statues? He says, “They are on the family trophy shelf, next to the soccer trophies. I think the World’s Greatest Mom trophy from Mother’s Day is up there as well.”
The most popular spot to stash an Oscar? The bathroom! Says Emma Thompson, “They’re great big, gold, shiny things. They’re up there tarnishing quietly along with everything else I own, including my body.”
If this perhaps penultimate symbol of success in the world today so easily tarnishes and decays, what could we possibly hope to do that would add to or bolster up the perfect work of Christ on the cross? This is why Paul draws the conclusion in Galatians 3:9: “So then, those who are of faith are blessed…”
Jesus does not tarnish with age, but grows sweeter and stronger in us with each passing year.
Not those who achieve great things, even for God, but those who rest in the great achievement of Christ on the cross are truly blessed. In Galatians 2:21 Paul insists that, if we could save ourselves, Christ died for no reason! And he goes on in Galatians 3:1 (the next verse) to add that the cross is such a shocking display of condescension and mercy that it necessarily implies our utter helplessness!
God would not have sent his Son to die if we could save ourselves, nor would he if he couldn’t completely save us to himself!
Are you still trusting in your tarnished works or greatest accomplishments — whether an Oscar for acting, or your World’s Greatest Mom trophy — to make your right before a holy, good God? Then throw your trophies at the foot of the cross and surrender to the implications of that shocking display of condescension and mercy.
As a professing Christian, if you have begun by faith in Christ but now have been bewitched by the lie that you have or must continue in your own strength, then receive this blessed and powerful reminder: the Spirit ministers, not by or in your works or effort, but by and in your trust in the strength and sufficiency of Christ’s work on the cross for you! (Galatians 3:1-5)
If Christ is your trophy, then through faith you have the greatest treasure this world will ever know. Jesus does not tarnish with age, but grows sweeter and stronger in us with each passing year.