What Do You Cherish Most?

by Sally Matheny

What do you cherish most?

Perhaps you have a favorite football team or maybe you cherish your own home team (a.k.a. the family). Aside from the precious people in your life, what do you cherish most?


There’s a book of photographed stuffed animals, by Mark Nixon, titled, Much Loved.  They aren’t just ordinary stuffed animals. They are comrades who were hugged and tugged until they became unrecognizable stuffing.  Some barely held together with tiny stitches of love.
I thought about that book one day when I was cleaning out my attic and stumbled upon two cherished companions—my teddy bear and my husband’s teddy bear.  They were similar in size and color, and even had the same creative name—Teddy.  Both had great ears, trained to listen only to children. They had bravely traveled on many adventures, physically, and through the imaginations of their owners.

Because we loved them so, we defended them. They were never coerced to a donation box or into a yard sale. We outgrew the bears but they safely retired to a protected Rubbermaid habitat in the attic.

Cherished Teddy Bears-Hers & His
There’s another large, plastic container located inside my closet. My family has instructions that in the case of an emergency, save lives first, and then, if they can save only one item, grab that container!

It holds our wedding album, baby books, and special items regarding the adoption of our youngest child. Scrapbooks chronicling the first year of each of our children are tucked inside. Whoever has to tote that heavy container out of the house is lucky I haven’t scrapbooked every year of my children’s lives. Between the three of them, that would total fifty-one years!

I know the saying is to cherish the memories, but my memory isn’t so good. So I treasure the large collection of photos and videos that help prod the thoughts and emotions back for me. 

As a child, I treasured things like teddy bears and trinkets.  As an adult, the things I hold dear relate to my experiences with the people I love.

I must have this. I must have that.

Some people say, “I cannot live without this,” or “I must have that.” This may be as simple as a morning cup of coffee or as demanding as living in a certain neighborhood with a certain kind of car. But what should we cherish the most in life?


Consider Proverbs 4:7-9 (NIV): 

“The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Cherish her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will honor you. She will give you a garland to grace your head and present you with a glorious crown.”  

It’s okay to appreciate the things we have, but more importantly God says we are to adore the understanding of His Word.

It may cost us our time, a friendship, or a job. Whatever it costs us to love, to defend, and to treasure God’s Word, it is worth it. If we embrace His wisdom and pray for understanding, we will be lifted up and honored with a glorious crown of eternal life.

Wow. My teddy bear, my photos—nothing I have, not even the people I love dearly, can do that. My best investment is to seek understanding of God’s wisdom. 

What about you? What do you cherish most?